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Partnership of Historic Bostons

Animations: See what Boston looked like centuries ago.
Enjoy the Rose Kennedy Greenway from today back to about 1500. Click on the link and go to full screen. via GIPHY
See Beacon Hill from the present back to 1630. Joe Bagley of the City of Boston Archaeology program has created another wonderful animation.   
Back Bay from centuries ago until now.  This animation includes the Native American fish weir.
This time we go all the way back to the 1630 shoreline from today's Fanueil HallClick on the link and go to full screen.
See the site of the Town House from the present to pre-1630.  Courtesy of the City of Boston Archaeology Program.

The Shawmut Project

The story of the place we now call Boston" contains a 20-second animation that shows how the Back Bay looked until about 400  years ago. Please be patient as the digital reconstruction loads.

 “Throughout prehistory, the area that is now Boston Common would have been on the western shore of Shawmut near the tidal area of the Charles River that made up Back Bay. At low tide, the entire area from Boston Common to Kenmore Square would have been a massive mudflat perfect for harvesting Clams.”  

Scroll down to the digital reconstruction of the Back Bay about 5,200-400 years ago as seen from near the Frog Pond Site.



                        For the best views, download full-size maps and enlarge sections. 


The Lamb maps were drawn as of December 25 in each year from 1630 to 1645.  Each was labeled "plan of Boston showing existing ways and owners."   All maps are courtesy of the Normal B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library. 

16301631163216331634, 1635, 1636,  16371638, 1639, 16401641, 16421643, 16441645


The Appleton map is "A rough and inaccurate sketch of the streets of Boston as they are supposed to have been first laid out & the owners of the soil, from 1630 to 1650 or thereabouts." 

Here is "an Exact Draught of Bostone harbour, with a Survey of most of the Islands about 1711."

Boston wharves from Long Wharf were drawn by John Bonner in 1714. 

Click here for a plan of Boston in 1722 by Abel Bowen. 

"The town of Boston in New England" by John Bonner is the most famous colonial map. 

"A New Plan of ye Great Town of BOSTON in New England in AMERICA with the many Additionall [sic] Buildings & New Streets to the Year, 1739" was published by  William Price. 

"A new plan of ye great town of Boston in New England in America, with the many additionall [sic] buildings & new streets to the year 1743" was also published by William Price. 


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