Located in downtown Boston, steps away from the waterfront, Faneuil Hall is alive today as it was in 1742 when our nation’s fathers proclaimed it “The Cradle of Liberty.” For 280 years, Faneuil Hall has been a prominent meeting location for residents and visitors to Boston and a central point of commerce for the city.
In 1742, Peter Faneuil, one of Boston’s wealthiest merchants, built Faneuil Hall as a gift to the city. The building would serve as a meeting hall and a permanent central marketplace. The edifice was home to merchants, fisherman, and meat and produce sellers, and provided a platform for the country’s most famous orators. It became home to the town government and served as a public hall for concerts, banquets, and ceremonies.
The building was named in Faneuil’s honor but a significant portion of his wealth came directly as well as indirectly from human enslavement.
Faneuil Hall was expanded to include Quincy Market in 1826 when Boston’s rapid growth necessitated a larger marketplace. It was named in honor of mayor Josiah Quincy who organized its construction without any tax or debt. The South Market and North Market buildings were completed in 1827. The market remained a vital business hub throughout the 1800’s but by the mid-1900’s, the buildings had fallen into disrepair and many stood empty. The once thriving Marketplace was tagged for demolition until a committed group of Bostonians sought to preserve it.
Through the vision of Jim Rouse, architect Benjamin Thompson and Mayor Kevin White, the dilapidated structures were revitalized. The 1976 renovation was the first urban renewal project of its kind and is considered the original “Festival Marketplace”.
Faneuil Hall Marketplace is one of the top 10 tourist destinations in the country and is at the top of the list of places to visit in Boston. Over 80 retailers occupy 200,000+ square feet of retail space in the iconic mixed use festival marketplace. Customer can enjoy unique local offerings as well as nationally recognized stores while indulging in the diverse types of cuisine at our restaurants and in the world-famous Quincy Market Colonnade, the first food hall in the United States! The cobblestone promenades are filled with music from local musicians and jaw-dropping routines of world-renowned street performers.