What do you think of when you hear Beacon Hill? History, wealth, famous people, state government? All apply. Home to quaint cobblestone streets, Federal-style brick mansions, and secret walled gardens, the area has been, and continues to be, home to some of the city’s most prominent residents. The neighborhood also has deep ties to the city’s Black community. During the 19th century, many of the city’s most famous Black and white abolitionists resided there, and the neighborhood was an important stop on the Underground Railroad. Today, its bow-front townhouses, one-of-a-kind boutiques, and tree-lined streets provide an Instagrammable experience. In fact, Acorn Street, a private way first laid out in 1823, is the most photographed street in Boston—and was named one of the world’s 10 most beautiful alleys by USA Today in 2016.
Ever wonder how Beacon Hill got its name? One of those fun facts: in 1635, a beacon tower was erected on the tallest point in central Boston—where the Massachusetts State House now stands—so residents could have warning of impending danger. But storms kept blowing the wooden tower down. Eventually, in 1791, Charles Bullfinch, the architect of the State House, designed a monument to replace the beacon tower. The Beacon Hill Monument is on Bowdoin Street, behind the State House.
Find out more about Beacon Hill here.