As the oldest still-standing building in Boston, the Old State House is arguably the most historically significant structure in the city today. Built more than three centuries ago, it stands as the crown jewel of the city's famous Freedom Trail, and many of the country's greatest political achievements and historical moments happened within its four walls.
It is appropriately referred to as the "Heart of Revolutionary Boston," as a number of America's forefathers – including John Adams, James Otis, John Hancock and Samuel Adams–discussed the future of the colonies under British rule here. Steps from its entrance, five men died in the Boston Massacre, and the Declaration of Independence was even declared to the people of Boston from its balcony.
In subsequent years, the building grew to become the first state house of the Commonwealth. Over the years that followed, it served many functions, including as city hall, post office, a mercantile exchange and even a shopping arcade. The Old State House building was eventually restored in the late 19th century and became the museum it is today.
Located downtown at the corner of Washington and State, the Old State House is easily accessible via public transportation; take the MBTA Orange or Blue line subway to State Street. Follow the signs to Old State House. Garaged parking is available nearby but is often quite expensive. The site is open year-round, except for most major holidays, with hours of 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. In summer (May 26-Sept. 1), the museum is open until 6 p.m. Admission is $10 for adults and free for children ages 6-18.