Granary Burying Ground

Beacon Hill & Boston Common

Dating from 1660, this atmospheric atoll is crammed with historic headstones, many with evocative (and creepy) carvings. This is the final resting place of favorite revolutionary heroes, including Paul Revere, Samuel Adams, John Hancock and James Otis. Benjamin Franklin is buried in Philadelphia, but the Franklin family plot contains his parents.

The five victims of the Boston Massacre share a common grave, though the only name you are likely to recognize is that of Crispus Attucks, the freed slave who is considered the first person to lose his life in the struggle for American independence. Other noteworthy permanent residents include Peter Faneuil, of Faneuil Hall fame, and Judge Sewall, the only magistrate to denounce the hanging of the so-called Salem witches.

The location of Park St Church was once the site of the town granary; as the burying ground predates the church, it is named after the grain storage facility instead. While it is sometimes called the Old Granary Burying Ground, it’s not the oldest; King’s Chapel and Copp’s Hill date back even further.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Beacon Hill & Boston Common attractions

1. Park St Church

0.04 MILES

Shortly after the construction of Park St Church, powder for the War of 1812 was stored in the basement, earning this location the moniker ‘Brimstone…

2. Boston Athenaeum

0.04 MILES

Founded in 1807, the Boston Athenaeum is an old and distinguished private library, having hosted the likes of Ralph Waldo Emerson and Nathaniel Hawthorne…

3. Blaxton Plaque

0.06 MILES

The 50-acre Boston Common is the country’s oldest public park. If you have any doubt, refer to the plaque emblazoned with the words of the treaty between…

4. Robert Gould Shaw Memorial

0.09 MILES

The magnificent bas-relief memorial opposite the State House was sculpted by Augustus St Gaudens. It honors the 54th Massachusetts Regiment of the Union…

5. King's Chapel & Burying Ground


Puritan Bostonians were not pleased when the original Anglican church was erected on this site in 1688. The granite chapel standing today – built in 1754 …

6. Old City Hall

0.11 MILES

This monumental French Second Empire building occupies a historic spot. Out front, a plaque commemorates the site of the country's first public school,…

7. Brewer Fountain

0.11 MILES

Dating to 1868, this lovely bronze fountain depicts four aquatic deities from antiquity.

8. John Adams Courthouse

0.12 MILES

Peek inside the impressive courthouse on Pemberton Sq, which is home of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court (the oldest appellate court in the…