I was lucky enough to go on a vacation this summer to Boston. There are a few places in America to which a US History teacher should make a pilgrimage: Philadelphia, Washington DC, and Boston. I am glad to say I have now been to them all. As you likely remember, the American Revolution was conceived and fomented in Boston. I saw the site where Paul Revere put the lanterns in the Old North Church. I saw the place where men lay dying after the Boston Massacre. It was quite moving for me.
The strangest thing was to see the Old State House – another site of much Revolutionary talk – flanked on all sides by sky scrapers. One could be sad that they didn’t preserve the areas adjacent, but I was glad they preserved what they did. The Freedom Trail takes you by it all – old and new alike.
Boston has done a great job of incorporating their unique heritage into a modern walkable city. We visited the Boston Public Market regularly, were able to walk the streets of the Italian North End with ease, and admired the Boston Common and other city parks in full use.
There’s no reason why Oklahoma City – with only 50,000 fewer citizens – can’t build on our momentum to become a more modern walkable city, and incorporate our unique heritage. The ‘89er Trail around downtown Oklahoma City is a strong start to that.
I certainly recommend a trip to Boston, even if your pilgrimage destination is Fenway Park instead of Faneuil Hall.