Old South Meeting House
WELCOME to the Old South Meeting
Old South Meeting House, in the Downtown Crossing area of Boston,
Massachusetts, gained fame as the organizing point for the Boston Tea
Party on December 16, 1773. 5,000 colonists gathered at the Meeting
House, the largest building in Boston at the time.
The church, with its 183 foot steeple, was
completed in 1729. The congregation was gathered in 1669 when it broke
off from First Church of Boston, a Congregationalist church founded by
John Winthrop in 1630. During the American Revolution, the British
occupied the Meeting House, and stole William Bradford's Of Plymouth
Plantation (1620), a rare Pilgrim manuscript, hidden in Old South's
Old South Meeting House was almost destroyed in
the Great Boston Fire of 1872, and the congregation then built a new
church (the "New" Old South Church at Copley Square) which
remains its home to this day. Once each year, on the Sunday before
Thanksgiving, the Old South congregation returns to Old South Meeting
House for services in its ancestral home.
Famous congregation members have included Samuel
Adams, William Dawes, Benjamin Franklin, Samuel Sewall, and Phillis
Old South Meeting House has been an important
gathering place for nearly three centuries. Renowned for the protest
meetings held here before the American Revolution when the building
was termed a mouth-house, this National Historic Landmark has
long served as a platform for the free expression of ideas.
Today, the Old South Meeting House is open daily
as a museum and continues to provide a place for people to meet,
discuss and act on important issues of the day. The stories of the men
and women who are part of Old South�s vital heritage reveal why the
Old South Meeting House occupies an enduring place in the history of
the United States.
The museum and historic site is located at the
intersection of Washington and Milk Streets and can be visited for a
nominal sum. It is located near the State Street, Downtown Crossing
and Park Street MBTA (subway) stations.
The Old South Meeting House is claimed to be the
second oldest establishment existent in the United States.
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