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Tags : Museum

Establishment : 1680

Architect : John Jeffs

Address : 19 North Square, Boston, MA 02113, USA

Open : Wednesday- Sunday

Timings : 10:00 am to 4:00 pm

Admission Fee : USD 5 (Adults), USD 4.50 (Seniors and college students), USD 1 (ages 5-17)

Guided Tour Duration : 30 minutes

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The Paul Revere House, Boston Overview

Paul Revere House in downtown Boston is the oldest standing structure in the city and happens to be one of the 16 sites linked by the Freedom Trail. Once home to Paul Revere, an American patriot, the House is now run by the Paul Revere Memorial Association as a non-profit museum.

Established in the year 1680, the Paul Revere House in Boston’s North End is a National Historic Landmark. It was where Paul Revere, an American patriot during the American Revolution would stay. The oldest remaining building in the city, the House is now a non-profit museum open year-round that houses various artefacts that provide visitors with an insight into the patriot, craftsman and businessman’s illustrious life.

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Architecture of the Paul Revere House

When the House was first built, it had a gabled garret as well as a cellar and has since then undergone several renovations. In the mid-18th century, the garret was enlarged by raising the front roof line and the gables were replaced by windows.

By the second half of the 19th century, the House had already been sold by the Revere family and had been used for several purposes, including an immigrant tenement house. During this time, the ground floor was renovated so as to serve as space for shops, which included a candy story, a cigar factory, a fruits and vegetables business among others.

Later on, when the Paul Revere Memorial Association bought the House from Revere’s grandson, they raised money so they could preserve and renovate the structure that would later be open to the public.
Between 1907-1908, the House underwent some changes, with the third story front extension being removed to make it look more like its late 17th century self. When talking about the building, what remains from its initial establishment include 2 doors, 3 windows, some portions of the flooring as well as the foundation, some inner wall material, and raftering, which is somewhere about 90% of the original structure.

The House was perhaps the site of colonial living arrangements, known from its massive fireplaces, no interior hallways and the heavy beams. Going down, the ground floor houses a kitchen typical of the 18th century along with some cooking implements, while the Hall has been made to look like it did when the House was inhabited. Moreover, the chambers upstairs not only contain period furnishings from the time of Revere, but also contain items that actually belonged to the family itself.

The Paul Revere House Tours and Programs

The Paul Revere House is a historical landmark in the city and thus, it offers a number of tours, field trips, lectures, outreach programs for schools along with being open to summer camp groups, corporate groups, family reunions etc., striving to provide an excellent educational experience. Bookings for visits must be made well in advance and there is an admission fee charged, depending upon the age group. A frequently visited site on the Freedom Trail, the House staff outside provides information about the establishment while the staff inside will go more into detail about the family’s life and will explain the various artifacts. The different programs offered are:
  • Student Programs: The Man Behind the Myth, Paul Revere’s Midnight Ride: Storytelling Program, Walking Tour: Paul Revere’s Boston, Boston’s North End: The Immigrant Experience, Fun and Games in the 1700s, Herb Garden Scavenger Hunt etc.
  • Adult Programs: Lectures (Paul Revere’s Ancestry and Family, Paul Revere, Freemason, Paul Revere’s Military Career, Paul Revere and the War of 1812 etc.), Site visits, Guided Tour of the Revere House, Special Guided Tour of the Pierce Hichborn House, Walking Tours of the North End, Private Evening Tour of the Paul Revere House

How to Reach

Since it is a popular site on the Freedom Trail, most people visit the Paul Revere House while on their tour of the Trail. Moreover, it is also quite close to other attractions in the city like the New England Aquarium, the Boston Common, Rose Kennedy Greenway, Beacon Hill and some others. When coming via the Subway, Haymarket is the closest stop on the Green or the Orange line, Government Center is the closest stop on the Green and Blue line, while Aquarium also falls on the Blue line. It is possible to get here by car but the one-way streets are quite narrow; parking around the House is limited but there is metered parking on Commercial Street. Getting here in a bike is a great idea especially since there are bike stations on Atlantic Avenue.

History of the Paul Revere House

The House was built in 1680 by John Jeffs and occupied the area where the Second Church of Boston’s parsonage was formerly located, destroyed in 1676’s Great Fire. It was first owned by a slave merchant Robert Howard and was known to have been occupied by Paul Revere only around 1770, when he moved his family here from Clark’s Wharf and lived here till 1800.

After the patriot sold it in 1800, it turned into a sailor and immigrant boarding house, and later a tenant house with shops in the 20th century. It was in 1902 that the House was purchased by Revere’s great grandson, John P. Reynolds, Jr., who later sold it to the Paul Revere Memorial Association three years later, in 1905. The Paul Revere House was ultimately opened to the public in 1908 after the Association renovated it with the help of Joseph Chandler, an architect. Today, the House is not only the oldest remaining structure in Boston, it is also one of the country’s oldest museum houses.

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