Reflecting Attucks

The Old State House and Old South Meeting House will be closed to the public and all events cancelled until further notice to combat the spread of COVID-19 →


Now Open

At the Old State House

Entrance is included in the cost of admission.

Memory in Action

Reflecting Attucks is a new temporary exhibit at the Old State House exploring the life and legacy of Crispus Attucks. Through historical record, Native American tradition, pop culture, and other pivotal events in American history, Reflecting Attucks provokes visitors to consider how Attucks has been remembered over the past 250 years. To complement the exhibit, Revolutionary Spaces will offer special gallery talks and facilitated dialogues. The exhibit will be on display in Representatives Hall at the Old State House until March 2021 and is included in museum admission.

Crispus Attucks was one of five men who were killed the night of March 5, 1770, when a detachment of the King’s soldiers fired into an angry crowd gathered in King Street (now Boston’s State Street). Throughout the 1770s, Bostonians remembered the Massacre victims each year, building public support for Independence.

Boston’s black abolitionists revived this tradition of remembering during the 1850s, marking the anniversary of the Boston Massacre as Crispus Attucks Day and using the memory of Attucks’ sacrifice to mobilize support for the cause of antislavery. And thanks to the work of civil rights leaders William Monroe Trotter and Melnea Cass, Attucks Day observances became an important touchstone in Boston’s ongoing dialog about racial justice throughout the 20th-century and continuing today.


Dig Deeper: Recommended Reading


The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Blog Series

The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part I
The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part I

Reinventing Crispus Attucks for the Abolitionist Movement

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The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part II
The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part II

Anthony Burns and the Fugitive Slave Act

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The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part III
The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part III

Patriot or Fool? Crispus Attucks and the Civil Rights Movement

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The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part V
The Legacy of Crispus Attucks Part V

From the Boston Massacre to Black Lives Matter

Read more⟶


Other Exhibits

Reflecting Attucks
Reflecting Attucks

New exhibit now through March 2021 at the Old State House.

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Colony to Commonwealth
Colony to Commonwealth

Trace the Revolutionary story of Massachusetts as the birth of America unfolds around you through rare artifacts and interactive displays.

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Voices of Protest
Voices of Protest

Discover compelling people who made a difference at Old South Meeting House and the history of protest and free speech that continues to this day.

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The Hall at the Old South Meeting House
The Hall at the Old South Meeting House

Built in 1729 as a Puritan house of worship, the Old South Meeting House was the largest building in colonial Boston.

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Hands-On History
Hands-On History

For young visitors and the young at heart, there's no better way to understand history than to reach out and touch it at the Old State House.

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Boston Massacre Multimedia Presentation
Boston Massacre Multimedia Presentation

This light and audio show at the Old State House presents the personal perspective on the Massacre and its aftermath.

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Council Chamber at the Old State House
Council Chamber at the Old State House

Sit in the seat of the British Empire's colonial power and be transported to the birth of American Independence.

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Exhibit Scavenger Hunts
Exhibit Scavenger Hunts

Available for all ages at the Old South Meeting House.

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