Saturday, December 10, 2016

Epic Fall Road Trip - Part VII: Massachusetts

Tuesday, November 1st:

After finishing the Marginal Way walk in Ogunquit, Maine, we continued south to Massachusetts where we spent the next three days exploring Salem, Boston and the Cape.

We arrived in Salem in the late afternoon, found a parking spot, and started exploring the city. Our first stop was the Salem Witch Museum. At the museum we learned about what happened during the Witch Trials of 1692 and the aftermath along with the evolution of witchcraft and the consequences of fear mongering.

I have to admit, the museum was very interesting and I learned a lot about the culture in the 17th Century and how it pandered to the witch craft hysteria. Overall it was a great museum!

After leaving the museum we walked to Essex St where we signed up for a Night Tour of the City. To kill time before the tour started we went to a few of the sites we would be seeing at night so we could take pictures with the daylight.

Our next stop was the Salem Witch Trails Memorial. This memorial is for those 20 people who were wrongfully convicted and executed (19 hung and one crushed) during the Salem Witch Trials.

Around the courtyard are twenty benches, each dedicated to one of the victims and on the ground are quotes from victims. 

Next to the Memorial is The Burying Point Cemetery, which is the oldest cemetery in Salem (established in 1637). Along with a few Mayflower pilgrims buried here there is also Nathaniel Hawthorne's great-great-grandfather, John Hathorne, who was the judge during the witch trials.


I love all the old headstones in this cemetery! It was very interesting to walk around and see all the old dates. 

After seeing the cemetery we continued to wander around the city.

[He's such a good sport!]

After walking around and taking pictures of all the beautiful historic buildings, we decided to grab a bite to eat at Turner's Seafood at Lyceum Hall. This is the best lobster I have ever had!

[We ordered lobster mac n cheese for an appetizer] 

[Josh had a hot lobster roll and I had lobster pie (large chunks of lobster floating in butter and covered with a parmesan crust)] 


After dinner we walked back down Essex Street where I found these cool old buildings! We would learn later that the building at the end of the street was used during the taping of Hocus Pocus!

We gathered outside of a shop on Essex St where we got our stickers and met our amazing tour guide, Kevin! He looked a bit tired and explained to us that he had just finished his 7th Halloween in Salem. Apparently that is the busiest day of the year and things can get a little wild! 

Kevin took us around the city to various haunted buildings where he told us spooky stories.

We were surprised (and excited) when one of the stops was outside of the restaurant where we had dinner! Apparently the whole building is haunted by a little girl. The second floor of the building is a banquet hall where a lot of events where held until the hauntings got really bad. One story he told was about a group of people that were setting up tables and chairs in the banquet hall and every time they left the room the tables and chairs would rearrange themselves. And a few times the little girl appeared to some of the people at the restaurant. I don't think they do very many events there anymore.

Kevin then took us to the Town Hall building (which we saw earlier) where Hocus Pocus was filmed.


We then walked to the old police station where, in 1906, Harry Houdini performed one of his famous escapes. He was locked in a cell, naked, with three pairs of handcuffs and two pairs of leg irons on. In under 13 minutes Houdini was able to unlock himself, get out of his cell, unlock the cell that held his clothes, dress, and present himself to the crowd waiting outside.

We then walked to this house where we were told stories about how the house is so haunted that people have quit their jobs rather then go inside it. Kevin told us to take pictures and that on multiple occasions people have seen things in the windows! Needless to say, I didn't spend much time looking at the building and I told Josh to take the pictures!

We then walked over to another super haunted house which is right next to the cemetery!

After our wonderful tour, Kevin took us back into his shop (where he sells wands) to tell us more stories. He even told us personal stories about him and the building we were currently in! Eek!

After the tour I went back through my phone to look at my pictures and I found this one: 

I don't remember taking it and I'm pretty sure it's a ghost! What do you think?!

Since Boston was just a hour away we decided to make the drive that night.

[Another great walking day!]

Wednesday, November 2nd:

We woke up in beautiful Boston, walked to the Visitor Center, and jumped on a Freedom Trail walking tour of the city.

We met our eccentric tour guide at the Visitor Center in Boston Common. He then lead us on an amazing walking tour around the city. 

[Fountain in Boston Common with the Park Street Church in the background]

[Walking along the Freedom Trail towards the State House]

[State House] 

[Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Regiment Memorial]

After seeing the State House (yes, the dome is made of GOLD!) we stopped at the Robert Gould Shaw and the 54th Massachusetts Regiment Memorial. We then walked to the Park Street Church where, on July 4, 1829, William Lloyd Harrison delivered his "Address to the Colonization Society", making his first public statement against slavery. Our tour guide told us the locals didn't take it very well. The church also hosted the debut of "My Country, 'Tis of Thee" by Samuel Francis Smith on July 4, 1831. We then sang the song on the steps of the church before heading to the Granary Burying Ground.

This cemetery is Boston's third-oldest and was founded in 1660. This is where Paul Revere, five victims of the Boston Massacre, three signers of the Declaration of the Independence (Samuel Adams, John Hancock, and Robert Treat Paine), and about 5000 other people are buried.

[John Hancock]

After looking at the graves we continued our walk to the First Public School Site, the Omni Hotel (where Boston Cream Pies were first made), the alley behind the Omni (where John Wilkes Booth practiced shooting), the Old South Meeting House, and then to the Old State House. Along the route we stopped on a Congress Street where our tour guide told us the story of the Boston Tea Party. We then all chanted "Dump the tea into the Sea" three times.

[First Public School Site - Old City Hall]

[Benjamin Franklin statue at the First Public School Site] 

[Old South Meeting House]

The Old State House was built in 1713 and is one of the oldest public buildings in the United States.

On March 5, 1770, The Boston Massacre occurred in front of the building. And on July 18, 1776 the Declaration of Independence was proclaimed from the east side balcony by Col. Thomas Crafts (who was one of the Sons of Liberty). 

[Old State House] 

Next, we walked to Faneuil Hall and it was here that the first part of our tour ended. We were told that in an hour the second part would start up in front of Faneuli Hall. I asked our tour guide for food reccomendations and he said to go into Quincy Market (which was right across from Faneuli Hall) and get lobster rolls and clam chowder at the first shop on our right. So that's what we did!

[Another great lobster themed meal!]

After our amazing lunch we walked back up to the Old State House to get a few more pictures.

[Old State House]

[Boston Massacre Site]

We then walked back to Faneuil Hall where we met up with our tour guide for the second half of the Freedom Trail tour.

[Faneuil Hall]

We went inside Faneuli Hall to explore the second and third floors.

[Great Hall]

[Third Floor]

Next, we hopped back on the Freedom Trail and headed to Marshall Street.

At Marshall Street we saw the "Boston Stone" and a few of the oldest pubs and taverns in the United States.

[Marshall Street]

[The Boston Stone] 

Next, we crossed into the North End where we explored the Italian District and then stopped by Paul Revere's House.

[Paul Revere's House]

[The door is original]

After seeing his house, we walked over to the Paul Revere Mall to see the Paul Revere Statue.

[Paul Revere statue with the Old North Church in the background]

[What real cobble stones look like] 

Next, we walked over to the Old North Church. Here we learned that this church is where the famous "one if by land, two if by sea" signal was sent since it was the tallest building in Boston at the time.

The church still uses these old pews which were very common for the time.

At this point our tour ended but the Freedom Trail continues so we followed it!

[Copp's Hill Burying Ground]

After exploring Coop's Hill we crossed the Charlestown Bridge and walked around the historic Charlestown.

We made our way up to the Bunker Hill Monument and took a few photos before heading back toward the Charles River to see the USS Constitution.

[Bunker Hill Monument]

[USS Constitution]

We then walked back across the Charlestown Bridge and headed back into the heart of Boston.

I had no idea what a Boston Cream Pie was but I knew I had to have one! We went back to the haunted Omni hotel where we bought our own individual Boston Cream Pies!

We then crossed the street and went back to the First Public School Site where I took pictures of Josh with the "Democratic Donkey" statue. Fun fact: The donkey first appeared in 1837 in a political cartoon satirizing the recently retire President Andrew Jackson, who was know by his opponents as a "jackass." 

If you are a Republican then you stand in front of the statue and "oppose it" (place your head against his).

If you are a Democrat you are supposed to sit on it.

And if you are Independent then you stand next to it.

Thanks Josh for being my model! 

We then took our Boston Cream Pies and went back to Boston Common to eat them.

[State House at sunset]

[Boston Common] 

[Me showing off my Freedom Trail Walking Tour tag]


[So happy to be sitting and eating a delicious pie at the end of a long day]

After enjoying our pies we walked back over to the Granary Burying Ground to find a few more head stones.

[Samuel Adams]

[Paul Revere's Original Tomb]

[Tomb that was erected in Paul Revere's honor long after he died]

We then walked through Boston Common and went back to our hotel to get ready for dinner.

Boston is pretty well known for it's Italian food so Josh found us a place to eat which was right down the street from the hotel.

I got home made tortellini and Josh got the salmon and we shared truffle fries. OMG! I can honestly say this is some of the best Italian food I have ever had! We have to go back! Thank you Teatro!

Thursday, November 3rd:

We left Boston and headed south along the coast to Plymouth. 

[Plymouth Rock]
[The Pilgrim Memorial State Park - Plymouth Rock is inside]

After walking around Plymouth we drove all the way out to the tip of the Cape to where the Pilgrims FIRST landed: Provincetown!

Is your mind blown?! Apparently the Mayflower pilgrims first landed here in November 1620. They stayed here a few weeks before continuing onto Plymouth. 

The Cape was super foggy, humid, sandy, deserted, and just a little miserable so we decided to grab quick bite to eat before heading out.

[Lobster bisque!]

We traveled south to the Chatham Lighthouse. The weather wasn't so bad here but it wasn't great. So we took a few pictures and then headed to Cape Cod for the night.

Josh and I had both caught a cold while we were in Boston (still love that city!) so before dinner we had to stop by Walgreens to buy a bunch of medicine. Good times! That night we went to dinner at the Black Cat Tavern because they have "the best clam chowder in New England" and they may be RIGHT! The chowder is served to you in mugs and it is amazing! Perfect for a cold and sore throat!

[Another good walking day!]

Friday, November 4th:

We woke up in Cape Cod and headed to Nobska Lighthouse. The fog from the day before was gone, the sky was clear, and the temperature was perfect! 

[Martha's Vineyard - Probably the closest I will ever get to the beautiful island]

What can I say about Massachusetts?! It is such an amazing state! I love all the history and all the delicious food! I would definitely come back!

1 comment:

Jessica Munk said...

Fun to follow your travels! Also what's your mailing address? Jessica dot munk at gmail