About Boston's Faneuil Hall

Faneuil Hall is a historic marketplace in Boston near the North End. It is named after Peter Faneuil, the man who financed the building of the original structure. John Smibert was responsible for the design. It initially went up in the year 1742. It had an open market on the bottom floor and a meeting room on the second floor. Roughly twenty years after the structure was built, it was destroyed in a fire. It was recreated within a year. That is the structure that stands today and that is known as the "Cradle of Liberty."

During the American Revolution, Faneuil Hall served as a meetinghouse for the townspeople. It became known for being a place where the revolutionaries spoke out against the tyranny of the British Parliament. The lower floor acted as a market, but the upper floor was where men like Samuel Adams stood before the townspeople and incited rebellion. It was also the place where the body of the boy Christopher Seider, sometimes spelled Snider, was taken when he was shot and killed by a loyalist.

The central part of Faneuil Hall was expanded upon by Charles Bulfinch in the 19th century. He is responsible for the pilasters that line each floor, giving the structure a many-columned appearance, though pilasters are merely the facade of columns. He also added another floor. The top floor of Faneuil Hall is now home to a museum that is much neglected by tourists and locals alike. Anyone interested in seeing the military museum of the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company of Massachusetts will find it up the staircase directly in front of the meeting hall. It is typically very quiet compared to the floors below.

Today, the first floor of Faneuil Hall is still a marketplace and there is also a basement. Visitors can find a variety of goods and food for sale, though it is smaller than even your average modern supermarket. Toward the front of the building, away from the statue of Samuel Adams, there is a staircase and elevator going up to the second floor. There are public restrooms on that floor beside the biggest draw of Faneuil Hall -- the Great Hall. Here, visitors can see where the townspeople of Boston sat as they were on the brink of revolution. Numerous eulogies of the politicians who made that revolution possible were given in that room as well.



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