Friday, January 13, 2012

Bunker Hill Monument - Boston

The Bunker Hill Monument sits atop Breed's Hill in Charlestown, MA (that's where the battle Bunker Hill actually took place). This granite obelisk stands an impressive 221 feet tall. The first major commemorative monument built in the United States, it is a reminder of the first major conflict between Colonial forces and the British in the Revolutionary war.

I've been to the monument several times before but this was the first time we happened to arrive before closing time. As it turns out, when you visit during normal business hours you can climb the 294 steps that rise in a tight spiral to a small observation deck at the top of the monument. My two boys hiked with gusto, counting off the conveniently labeled stairs on their way to the top. The three-year-old mentioned a few times that it was "a lot of stairs" but he didn't slow down until he hit the traffic jam that began on the last four steps. He certainly seemed less winded than I did by the experience!

Bunker Hill Monument from a few blocks away

Tall Tower / Short Boys

Looking up

Looking down. An steam powered elevator was used to lift construction materials up the center column but it was removed in 1844 to the detriment of out-of-shape photographers with mountain goats for children.

Resting up in preparation for the trip back down those 294 steps!

The Leonard P. Zakim Bunker Hill Memorial Bridge is visible through the smudged and weathered windows at the top of the monument in the last light of the day

During a celebratory firing in 1821 a hole was blown in the side of the cannon on display on the observation platform

Down we go!

The Bunker Hill Monument is at the the north end of the Freedom Trail, a fantastic self-guided walking tour through all the historic highlights of Boston. Just follow the red brick line through the city (not shown here because I was practically standing on it to take this).

A candid capture of the family also inadvertently captures some Bunker Hill lovin' that I didn't notice until I downloaded these at home...

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