About Historic Faneuil Hall
Historic Faneuil Hall
In early 18th century Boston a number of merchant families amassed great wealth through shipping and trade, among them Peter Faneuil, who marked his success by building a central food market in Boston in 1742. On the ground floor was an open air market with a space suitable for town gatherings above. In 1761 the building burned down and was rebuilt, becoming a focus of revolutionary activity.
Bulfinch’s Faneuil Hall
After the Revolution, the size of Faneuil Hall became inadequate and in 1805 the town called on Charles Bulfinch to expand the old building. Bulfinch doubled the width and height without altering its basic style. The market area was enclosed and a new “Bulfinch interior” installed in the meeting room, which remains virtually unchanged today.
Peter Faneuil’s original building was intended to serve Bostonians as a market place for food on one level, and a venue for ideas on the other. In 1980 came the debut of the Boston Classical Orchestra that continues to make its home in the historic auditorium, performing music from the time when Faneuil Hall was a platform for activism by Samuel Adams, Daniel Webster, and more recently, Susan B. Anthony.