The Concord Museum, at 53 Cambridge Turnpike, has a collection of artifacts used on the day the American Revolution began: Muskets, powder horns, flints, and of course, one of the two lanterns that Paul Revere had placed in the steeple of Boston’s Old North Church to signal the patriots of the advance of the Redcoats. (Other periods of Concord history are represented, too, including Henry David Thoreau’s desk and other items, and Native American stone tools going back 10,000 years.) Watch the Museum’s website for an all-new exhibit opening in 2021 that tells the story of April 19, 1775.
Old North Bridge
Stroll through history at Minuteman National Historic Park. Visit the Old North Bridge, walk in the footsteps of the Minute Men on Battle Road, or learn about some of Concord’s literary history at the Wayside.
The North Bridge, Minute Man Statue, grave of British Soldiers and monuments, marks “the shot heard round the world.” Check visitor center or web-site for the ranger talk schedule.
Minuteman National Park Visitor Center
Sites to see include the Old North Bridge, Minuteman Statue and 2 visitor centers with live and recorded presentations. Open Daily April 1-October 31. Free
Old Hill Burial Ground
Overlooking Monument Square is Concord’s Old Hill Burying Ground, which officially dates back to 1677, though is thought to contain unmarked graves from the town’s earliest settlers. Several prominent figures are buried here, including Captain John Parker, who led the militia men on April 19, 1775. John Jack, the first free slave to own land in Concord, is also buried here.
Monument Square, Concord, MA 01742
Revolutionary Concord in a Day
Revolutionary Concord in a Day
What role did Concord play in the American Revolution? Spend a day learning about “the shot heard round the world.” Begin your day at the Concord Visitor Center at 58 Main Street. There is plenty of free parking in the lot on Keyes Road or you can park on Main Street where you will have to feed the meter. Pick up maps and brochures and let our experienced staff orient you for the day.
Your first stop is the North Bridge which is .8 miles from the Concord Visitor Center. You can do the 15 minute walk through the center of town and down Monument Street or it’s a 2 minute drive with plenty of parking at the bridge. See where Colonial Militiamen fired on British Regulars in the first battle of the American Revolution. Check out the Minuteman Statue, created by a young Daniel Chester French (he sculpted the Lincoln Memorial at Washington D.C. at the end of his career) for the centennial celebration of the battle in 1875. Rangers are present to answer your questions and the North Bridge Visitor Center has merchandise, a movie and uniforms from 1775.
Next drive or walk back to Concord Center and park on Main Street. Check out the Old Hill Burying Ground and the Wright Tavern at the rotary (flag pole) at the center of town. The burial ground has the graves of Concordians who fought at the North Bridge. The Wright Tavern was built in 1747 and served as headquarters for the British regulars on April 19, 1775. It is not open to the public, but you can peak in.
If it’s a nice day, grab a sandwich to go at the Concord Cheese Shop at 29 Walden Street or Sally Ann’s at 73 Main Street and eat at the picnic tables in front of the Visitor Center or at the smaller tables in front of the Concord Free Public Library at 129 Main Street. If the weather is not so nice, eat inside at Main Street Cafe at 42 Main Street or at the famous Colonial Inn right on Monument Square.
After lunch visit the Concord Museum (53 Cambridge Turnpike) to see several revolutionary artifacts and visit their new April 19 Gallery featuring objects that bore witness to the events of that fateful day. It is a half mile walk from the visitor Center or a quick drive down Lexington Road with plenty of parking.
After being inside, you might enjoy walking the 5 mile long Battle Road trail where you can read the markers noting what happened as the 700 British regulars retreated back to Boston under fire from thousands of colonials. Park at the Merriam’s Corner Parking Lot on Lexington Road or if walking is not your thing, drive along Battle Road (Lexington Road/Route 2A) and stop at Hartwell Tavern (you will see signs on the road) and further on stop at the Paul Revere Capture Site and read about where Revere was captured on his famous midnight ride.
Along the Battle Road, in Lincoln, is the Minuteman Visitor Center at 250 North Great Road. Stop by to see Revolutionary objects and view the multimedia presentation about the Battles of Lexington and Concord.
Now it’s time to drive back to Concord and enjoy a relaxing dinner at Fiorella’s in the center of town at 24 Walden Street or at Trail’s End Cafe at 97 Lowell Street. Maybe cap off the night in the one of the old tavern rooms of the Colonial Inn for some revolutionary ambience!