Marblehead MA

Boston: An Early American Sampler

September 21-27, 2009



We joined Ed Bearss for a week in Boston, "The Cradle of Liberty" to gain insight into our Nation's early history. We visited some of our nation's earliest settlements including Plymouth, and the picturesque, waterfront towns of Salem and Marblehead.  Special visits included a private behind-the-scenes tour of Boston's Old North Church which included a climb up the bell tower and in Marblehead we enjoyed a private opening of their G.A.R. Hall which is preserved exactly as it was when the last meeting was held in the 1930s.  At Lexington and Concord, we walked the ground of the opening battles of the American Revolution.  We spent two full days in Boston touring historic buildings and sites along the famous Freedom Trail.  We took an in-depth look at three U.S. Presidents when we visited the birthplace of John Adams and John Quincy Adams and the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum.  Ed Bearss'  interpretation was complemented by an array of outstanding local historians, making this a very special experience.

This Was Our 2009 Itinerary...

September 21, Monday                

Gather at the Doubletree Hotel in Bedford, a suburb of Boston.  Join Ed and Marty for a welcome drink followed by dinner.  (R,D)

 September 22, Tuesday      Plymouth – Adams National Historic Site

We begin our tour with a day at Plymouth.  Here we'll see the Mayflower II, a replica of the ship that brought the Pilgrims to America in 1620. The 1627 English Village at Plimouth Plantation is a re-creation of the small farming town as it might have appeared seven years after the voyage of the Mayflower.   At the Adams National Historic Site, we'll tour the birthplaces of John Adams and John Quincy Adams and the Old House, which was the residence of the Adams family from 1788 to 1927.  (B)

September 23,Wednesday              Salem - Marblehead

Salem was one of the most important ports in early America.  At the Salem Maritime National Historic Site, we'll learn about Salem's seafaring days on a guided tour of its historic buildings, wharf and the three-masted tall ship, Friendship.  Then we'll hear the tale of the witchcraft trails and ensuing hysteria at the Salem Witch Museum.  We'll stroll the narrow, twisting lanes of Marblehead's Old Town, considered by many as New England's most picturesque neighborhood and at Abbot Hall we'll see the famous painting The Spirit of '76(B,L,D)


September 24, Thursday               Lexington – Concord –Walden Pond / Lowell

Today we'll focus on the Battles of Lexington and Concord.  In Lexington, we'll visit Buckman Tavern, the militia's headquarters; the Hancock-Clarke House where Samuel Adams and John Hancock stayed before the battle; and Munroe Tavern which the British used as their headquarters.  At the Minute Man National Historical Park, we'll see Concord's North Bridge, site of “the shot heard ‘round the world.”

We'll visit Walden Pond where Henry David Thoreau lived for two years. Designated a National Historic Landmark, it is considered the birthplace of the conservation movement.  (B,L)

September 25, Friday              Boston             

We'll spend a full day in downtown Boston following the Freedom Trail.  This 2.5 mile walking trail links a unique collection of museums, churches, meeting houses, and burial grounds that tell the story of the American Revolution.  See the gathering places where American resistance to Britain was born, grew and flourished.   Stops will include the Paul Revere House, the Old North Church, the Old State House, and the site of the Boston Massacre.  (B)

September 26,  Saturday            Boston

Today we'll cross the Charles River to complete the Freedom Trail with stops at the Bunker Hill Monument on Breed's Hill and the U.S.S. Constitution.  One of the U.S. Navy's six original frigates, "Old Ironsides" never lost a battle.

This afternoon we'll visit Dorchester Heights. The surprise seizure and fortification of Dorchester Heights in March 1776 was the first military success enjoyed by the Continental Army in the War for Independence. Gen. George Washington's surprise move forced the British to evacuate Boston. We'll visit the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and  Museum where the Kennedy era comes to life with its three theaters, period settings, and 25 multimedia exhibits.

Bid farewell to your fellow travelers at tonight's dinner.  (B,L,D)

September 27, Sunday

Depart Boston at your leisure.  (B)



 * Historian: Ed Bearss

* Tour Manager: Marty Gane.

* 6 nights hotel accommodations nights

* 6 breakfasts, 3 lunches, 3 dinners and one wine/beer welcome reception

* all taxes, baggage handling and gratuities; pre-trip notes, reading list and map book.


Mayflower II
Mayflower II
Adams National Historic Site
Adams Brithplace
Boston's Old State House
The Old State House
Shot Heard Round the World
'The Shot Heard 'Round the World'
Beacon Street