Copps Hill Burying Ground, Boston (2)

The view looking toward Boston Harbor and the Charlestown Navy Yard from Copp’s Hill Burying Ground in the North End, around 1898. Photo courtesy of Boston Public Library.

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The same scene in 2014:

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Aside from the missing wrought-iron railing around the tomb in the foreground, not much has changed in the cemetery in the past century or so.  Even the gate and the fence around the cemetery are the same. The background is different, but it’s hard to tell with the tree blocking the view.  Most of the navy yard buildings are still there, although it is no longer an active military facility.

See this post for another scene in Boston’s second oldest cemetery.

Copp’s Hill Burying Ground, Boston

Copps Hill Burying Ground, around 1904. Image courtesy of the Library of Congress, Detroit Publishing Company Collection.

Cemeteries

The cemetery in 2014:

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It’s almost a little eerie to see how little the cemetery has changed in the past 110 years.  Many of the headstones are even still tilted the same way as they were in 1904, and a few of the trees are still there; the tall, skinny tree in the 1904 photo just to the left of the corner of the building in right-center appears to be the same one that is there today.

The cemetery is located just up the hill from Old North Church, and is a stop on the Freedom Trail in Boston’s North End.  Although it doesn’t have as many famous interments as the Granary Burying Ground, there are still some notable people buried here, including Puritan ministers Increase and Cotton Mather, and Edmund Hartt, a shipbuilder whose most famous work, the USS Constitution, still sits right across the harbor from here.

Park Street Church, Boston (2)

Park Street Church with Old Granary Burying Ground, sometime in the 1860s. Photo courtesy of Boston Public Library.

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The scene in 2011:

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As mentioned in this post, which shows the view of the church from the opposite side, Park Street Church was once the tallest building in the United States, from its construction in 1810 until 1846.  It remained the tallest building in Boston until around the time that the first photo was taken.  The tallest building in Boston is also visible in the 2011 photo – the John Hancock tower, which was built over 100 years after the first photo was taken.

The church itself hasn’t changed much, and neither has the Old Granary Burying Ground next to it.  The cemetery was opened in 1660, and many notable figures from the Revolutionary War period are buried there, including John Hancock, Samuel Adams, Paul Revere, Robert Treat Paine, and the victims of the Boston Massacre.

John Hancock Memorial, Boston

John Hancock’s grave in the Granary Burying Ground, around 1898. Photo courtesy of Boston Public Library.

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The same site in 2009:

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Although John Hancock died in 1793, his grave wasn’t memorialized until 1896, about 2 years before the first photo, when the monument was dedicated.  The graveyard itself remains much the same as it was in 1898, down to the fence between it and the surrounding buildings, but the buildings themselves are very different from the ones at the end of the 19th century.