Old North Church

One if by land, Two if by sea

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On the night of April 18, 1775, Paul Revere sent a young church sexton shimmying up the fourteen-story steeple of the Old North Church. As instructed, the sexton hung two lanterns at the top. “One if by land, two if by sea,” as Longfellow’s famous poem goes. The pair thus informed the Patriots that the British soldiers would commence their journey to Lexington by crossing the water.

It’s the stuff of ancient tales and childhood picture books, but the history comes alive in this 1723 church. Here, brass chandeliers light the sanctuary and change-ringing bells signal the start of service. Formally known as Christ Church, this North End landmark is Boston’s oldest functioning house of worship. So take a few quiet moments to sit in one of the high box pews and relish the history.

The Old North Church is on the Freedom Trail. It’s just one block from the hilltop Copp’s Hill Burying Ground.

T: Haymarket/Orange or Haymarket/Green

At A Glance

193 Salem Street
Boston Massachusetts 02113

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