Paul Revere House

The Legacy of Paul Revere House: A Historic Abode and Family Heritage

Immerse yourself in history as you step into Paul Revere’s House, now transformed into a captivating museum situated along Boston’s renowned Freedom Trail in the North End. Here, a captivating glimpse into the everyday life of the American middle class during the Colonial era awaits.

When Paul Revere relocated to this residence in 1770, he inherited a wooden house that was already nearly a century old. Constructed between 1677 and 1680, in the aftermath of the Great Fire of 1676 which ravaged numerous homes, this house stands on the very spot where a previous dwelling owned by Puritan ministers Increase Mather and his son Cotton Mather once stood—a place associated with the infamous Salem Witch Trials.

The original occupants of Paul Revere’s house were Robert Howard, a prosperous Puritan merchant, his wife Elizabeth, their daughter Sarah, and their enslaved individual, Samuel.

Upon Revere and his family’s arrival, they found themselves surrounded by affluent Tory supporters of British colonial rule who resided in the neighboring elegant mansions of North Square.

Today, Paul Revere’s house proudly holds the distinction of being the oldest standing house in central Boston. Despite undergoing several modifications over the years, traces of the late Elizabethan Tudor architectural style, which was popular among Boston’s earliest settlers, are still visible.

Explore the Residence of Boston’s Renowned Midnight Rider

Paul Revere’s House: A Platform for Revere’s Revolutionary Politics

Paul Revere Statue in Boston's North End, with Old North Church in the background

Revere, an ambitious silversmith and entrepreneur, may have appeared to be a natural fit within this Loyalist Tory neighborhood. However, from the very beginning, he concealed his radical political beliefs from his more conservative neighbors, all while finding subtle ways to express his views.

One of Revere’s most renowned acts took place on March 5, 1771, precisely one year after the Boston Massacre, when he ingeniously employed the front windows of his house to stage a provocative reenactment. By stretching oiled paper across each window and using shadow figures, he vividly portrayed the confrontation between Colonists and British troops, the tragic deaths of the five Patriots, and the dramatic apparition of the Patriots’ spirits, demanding justice.

Over the following years, Revere stealthily slipped out of his residence and past his Tory neighbors to attend covert meetings of the Sons of Liberty in local taverns, including the Green Dragon near Faneuil Market. He also embarked on journeys to the harbor to participate in the historic Boston Tea Party.

However, Revere’s most celebrated clandestine undertaking unfolded when he covertly rowed across the waters to Charlestown. From there, he initiated his fabled midnight ride through the countryside, racing to alert Patriots Samuel Adams and John Hancock of the advancing British troops marching to apprehend them in Concord.

Unbeknownst to the British soldiers, their plans had been exposed, allowing the Colonial Militias and Minutemen to catch them off guard. This led to fierce battles throughout their retreat to Boston, marking the inception of the American Revolution.

Are you interested in witnessing a reenactment of Paul Revere’s iconic ride on the eve of the American Revolution? Be sure to consult the Patriots Day Schedule for more information.

Paul Revere’s Residence Today: Museum, Guided Tours, Engaging Events

Back of Paul Revere's House, which you can see during a tour

In the present day, the dwelling of Paul Revere has transformed into an intriguing museum situated along Boston’s renowned Freedom Trail. It warmly welcomes visitors for both self-guided tours and captivating events, most of which are included in the reasonably priced admission fee. When planning your visit, allocate approximately 30 to 45 minutes for touring the premises, while events may require a longer stay.

Exploring the house offers a fascinating experience for three key reasons:

  • Authenticity: This is the genuine abode where Paul Revere and his sizable family resided; it is not a mere replica.
  • Historical Artifacts: Throughout the house, you will encounter displays showcasing some of Paul Revere’s actual belongings, housed in glass cases.
  • Reflecting Boston’s Upper-Class Dwellings: Being an authentic structure, the house provides a vivid depiction of the opulent residences that were prevalent among the affluent citizens of Boston during the late 1600s.

The primary room on the ground floor is furnished in a manner reminiscent of its appearance when Robert Howard, the house’s second owner, purchased it in 1681, shortly after its construction. As a wealthy individual, he adorned the space with exquisite furniture that reflected his esteemed status.

The other rooms feature items from the Revere household, including Rachel Revere’s cherished chair, various items of furniture, Paul Revere’s saddlebags and pistols, as well as a selection of silverware. Notably, you will also have the opportunity to view a remarkable silver pitcher crafted by Paul Revere himself.

The museum frequently hosts special events that cater to diverse interests, encompassing reenactments, musical performances, and engaging hands-on activities designed specifically for children. While these events occur throughout the year, you can expect an array of captivating programs scheduled during February school winter breaks, around Patriots Day, and throughout the summer months. For precise timings, schedules, as well as information regarding operating hours and admission fees, please refer to the official website of the Paul Revere House.

Directions and Additional Information for Visitors of the Paul Revere House:

  • Location: 19 North Square, North End, Boston.
  • Discounts for Paul Revere House: Visitors in possession of a GoBoston card can enjoy free admission.
  • Further details: Contact 617-523-2338.
  • Accessing the site by subway: Take the Orange or Green Lines to Haymarket station, followed by a leisurely 10-minute stroll across the Greenway to reach the enchanting North End.
  • Parking: Explore the availability of Boston Parking Garages near the North End.

Exploring Paul Revere’s Vast Family and Residence: Historical Insights

Unveiling the Intriguing Paul Revere House and Its Extensive Legacy

Surprisingly, the Paul Revere house you are about to witness represents only a portion of the dwelling where Revere and his family once resided.

When Revere acquired the house, a previous owner had already expanded its size by adding a now-removed third floor.

The spaciousness of the house was necessary to accommodate Revere and his sizable family.

Initially, Revere shared his life with his first wife, Sara Orne, with whom he had eight children. Tragically, Sara passed away in 1773. Subsequently, Revere married Rachel Walker, and together they had another eight children. Additionally, Revere’s mother also resided with them for several years.

It is worth noting that not all of the children lived in the house simultaneously. Due to the common occurrence of infant mortality during that era, five children died in infancy. Furthermore, as the older children grew up, some of them moved away before the arrival of their younger siblings. Nevertheless, the house must have been brimming with the presence of six or seven children dwelling there, coupled with visits from the older ones.

In the years following the Revolution, Revere’s prosperity soared, prompting him and his family to relocate in 1800. Soon after, the North Square neighborhood experienced a decline as other affluent residents sought more fashionable addresses.

Throughout the 1800s, the Paul Revere House underwent a series of transformations, serving as a candy store, a bank, a cigar factory, a produce market, and tenement housing for immigrants. It is estimated that over 700 individuals resided in this historic abode from its construction in the late 1670s until 1902, when Revere’s descendants acquired it to preserve its heritage as a museum.

A meticulous restoration project undertaken in 1907-08 reverted the Paul Revere House to its original two-story design, albeit smaller than when Revere and his family occupied it.

The second floor slightly protrudes over the first, accentuating the dimness and compactness of the low-ceilinged rooms.

The primary downstairs room is dominated by a grand Elizabethan-style fireplace, evoking a sense of grandeur. The small diamond-paned windows, considered luxurious in the 1600s, allow only a modest amount of light to filter through.

Nevertheless, with all those children filling the house, one can imagine the warmth and coziness it exuded during the winter months. As for the summertime, the children likely frolicked outdoors, exploring the vicinity and the nearby waterfront.

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