Boston was founded on September 17, 1630, by Puritan colonists from England. Boston's early European settlers called the area Trimountaine (Three Mountains). They renamed the town for Boston, England, in Lincolnshire because many important "Pilgrim" colonists came from there.
Most of Boston's early citizens were Puritans. Shortly after Boston's settlement, Puritans created America's first public school and America's first university, Harvard University (1636). Harvard is in the city of Cambridge, which is across the Charles River from Boston. Until the 1760s, Boston was America's largest city.
During the early 1770s, the British tried to control the thirteen colonies with taxes. This made people from Boston start the American Revolution. The Boston Massacre, the Boston Tea Party, and several early battles happened in or near the city. It held its first town meeting in Faneuil Hall in 1743.
Boston continued to grow and attract immigrants from around the world. Many immigrants came from Ireland, and gave Boston a very Irish culture that remains today. President John F. Kennedy was a member of an Irish-American family that lived in Boston. Many immigrants also came from Italy, and lived in Boston's North End, where Italian culture remains, with various Italian stores, restaurants, bakeries, and homes.
The highest point in Boston is Bellevue Hill, at 330 feet above sea level. The lowest point is at sea level. Boston is the only state capital in the contiguous United States with an ocean coastline.
Boston has a continental climate with some ocean effects. Summers are normally warm to hot, rainy, and humid, while winters alternate between periods of cold rain and snow, with cold temperatures. Spring and fall are usually mild. Existing wind patterns that blow offshore lower the effect of the Atlantic Ocean.
The hottest month is July, with an average temperature of 73.4 °F (23.0 °C). The coldest month is January, with an average of 29.0 °F (−1.7 °C). Extremes have ranged from −18 °F (−28 °C) on February 9, 1934, up to 104 °F (40 °C) on July 4, 1911.
Boston's location on the North Atlantic moderates its temperature, but makes the city very likely to suffer from Nor'easter storm systems that can produce much snow and rain. The city averages 43.7 inches (1,110 mm) of precipitation a year, with 45.1 inches (1,150 mm) of snowfall per year.
Boston has a culture that is quite similar to New England, such as a New England accent and foods that are mostly seafood, salt, and dairy products. Irish-Americans are very important in Boston's politics and religious activities. Boston people also have a style of talking which is called Boston slang.
It is often thought that Bostonians have a strong sense of culture. Perhaps this is because Boston is famous for being a very intellectual place, with much of its culture coming from its universities. The city has many complex theatres, including the Cutler Majestic Theatre, Boston Opera House, Citi Performing Arts Center, the Colonial Theater, and the Orpheum Theatre. The headquarters of Unitarian Universalism (UU) is located in Boston. The Christian Science movement has also made its home in the Boston area.
Boston has many historic places and Bostonians take pride in their city's history. The American Revolution began in Boston, and many of its leaders, such as Samuel Adams, John Adams, John Hancock, and Paul Revere were from the city. Many of the sites from the Revolution are preserved in the city, including Faneuil Hall, the Old State House, Park Street Church, and others. These form the "Freedom Trail", a walk that takes visitors past many historic places in the city.
Boston is one of the United States' most important cities in education and health care. Boston and the towns around it contain many of the country's leading universities. Harvard, MIT, and Boston University are some of the most famous.
Professional sports are an important part of life in Boston. The Red Sox play baseball at Fenway Park, the oldest stadium in Major League Baseball (1912). The Celtics, a basketball team, and the Bruins, a hockey team, both play at the TD Garden. Boston's football team, the New England Patriots, play in Foxborough, a town 22 miles south of the city.
In 2013, the population of Boston was 645,966. The population has grown 9.6% since 2000. Boston has 13,339 people per square mile. The population is 47.8% male and 52.2% female. The racial breakdown is shown in the Racial Groups table. The people from outside the United States are 178,805. 27.7% of the population come from outside of the United States.
|White (includes White Hispanics)||52.9%|
|Two or more races||4.5%|
|Hispanic or Latino (of any race)||18.8%|
The unemployment rate in Boston is 5.9% since June 2014. The 35th annual homeless census from 2015 said there were 7,663 homeless men, women, and children in Boston. The homeless population increased 5.6% since 2013. The number of homeless people sleeping on the streets decreased by 22.8% since 2013. However, the number of adults in emergency shelters has grown by 10.9%. In 2015, the homeless family population increased by 25%. The total number of homeless men, woman, families and children increased by 20.9% from 3,541 to 4,281.
Mayor Marty Walsh announced his goal to help those in need for a permanent housing solution. Agencies such as Pine Street Inn, Boston Healthcare, Project Hope, and Boston Public Health Commission are helping the homeless. The homeless are helped by reducing family evictions. Property management companies and nonprofits, such as Project Hope and the Department of Neighborhood Development, will increase affordable housing options. Boston Public Health Commission and the Department of Neighborhood Development will work together to provide support for treatment options and shelters. The Wyman Re-Entry Center has a 90-day residential substance-abuse and recovery program. The Safe Harbor serves adults with HIV. The project SOAR stands for Stability, Opportunity, Achievement, and Recovery, and helps clients maintain a healthy lifestyle and provide support in moving to permanent housing.
Some of the Colleges and Universities in Boston are:
- Baystate College
- Benjamin Franklin Institute of Technology
- Berklee College of Music
- Boston University
- Boston College
- Bunker Hill Community College
- Emerson College
- Emmanuel College
- Fisher College
- Massachusetts College of Art and Design
- MGH Institute of Health Professions
- New England College of Business and Finance
- Northeastern University
- School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston
- Simmons College
- Suffolk University
- Wentworth Institute of Technology
- Wheelock College
- University of Massachusetts Boston
There are many more not listed here.
The main highways for the area are:
|Boston Harbor tunnels|
|Sumner Tunnel||Route 1A South||1934||Toll of $3.50 for non-commercial vehicles and $5.25 for commercial vehicles.|
|Callahan Tunnel||Route 1A North||1961||Repair work to this tunnel caused complete closure of the tunnel, which began at 11 pm on December 27, 2013 and ended on March 12, 2014.|
|Ted Williams Tunnel||Interstate 90 both East and West||1995||built for the Big Dig|
|Thomas P. O'Neill Jr. Tunnel||Interstate 93 North and South||2003-2006||built for the Big Dig|
|Dewey Square Tunnel||Interstate 93 south (Congress st to Kneeland st)||1959|
|City Square Tunnel||US Route 1||built for the Big Dig|
|Charlestown Bridge||1900||connects Charlestown with Downtown area|
|Leverett Circle Connector Bridge||1999-10-07||connects Storrow Drive with Interstate 93, built for the big dig|
|Tobin Bridge||1950-02-27||Is more than two miles (3 km) from Charlestown to Chelsea over the Mystic River in Massachusetts. The bridge is the largest in New England.|
|Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge (Zakim Bridge)||2003||built for the Big Dig, carries Interstate 93 North and South|
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