Christ Church in the City of Boston, also known as Old North Church, is the oldest standing church building in Boston, having first opened its doors to worshippers on December 29, 1723. Its 191 foot steeple is the tallest in Boston and, because of its prominence, would play a dramatic role in the American Revolution and would be immortalized in Henry Wadsworth Longfellow's poem The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere.
On April 18, 1775 Paul Revere met up with the sexton Robert Newman to tell him how to signal the advancement of British troops towards Lexington and Concord. Newman then met fellow Sons of Liberty Captain Pulling and Thomas Bernard. Leaving Bernard to keep watch outside, Newman opened the church and he and Pulling climbed the stairs and ladders up eight stories to hang two lanterns for a few moments. It was long enough for patriots in Charlestown to learn what has been immortalized by the phrase "one if by land, two if by sea" in Longfellow’s poem. The British were advancing by boat across the Charles River.
The famous Old North Church steeple has been blown down twice by hurricanes - once in 1804 and again in 1954. The Old North Church is still an active Episcopal congregation today.
The Clough House, on the campus of Old North Church, features Captain Jackson's Historic Chocolate Shop and the Print Shop of Edes and Gill. Experience live demonstrations of 18th-century chocolate-making and printing processes!
A GRAVE MISTAKE In the basement of Old North are 37 crypts containing the remains of over 1000 former members of the Church’s congregation. One notable, Major John Pitcairn, a British hero who lead the Redcoats at the Battle of Lexington and Concord, was killed in the Battle of Bunker Hill. Pitcairn was buried beneath Old North but was scheduled to be sent home to be reinterred in England’s Westminster Abbey. Lt. Shea was sent instead by accident.
Freedom Trail Foundation tours that feature this site:
Walk Into History Tour — North End
African-American Patriots Tour
Walk Into History — Joint ticket for Behind the Scenes Tour
Old North Church- Boston National Historical Park
193 Salem St.
Boston, MA 02113
January - February: 10:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
March - May: 9:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
July - October: 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m.
November - December: 10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Worship services: Sundays 9:00 a.m. & 11:00 a.m.
Closed: Thanksgiving, Christmas
The Clough House
21 Unity St.
Boston, MA 02113
Captain Jackson's Colonial Chocolate Shop, 617-523-6676
Print Shop of Edes and Gill, 617-205-1775, www.bostongazette.org
April 12 - June 15, Saturdays - Sundays 11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
June 16 - October 31, daily 11:00 a.m. - 5:30 p.m.
November - March, Saturdays, 11:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Open school vacation weeks.