Boston Women's Heritage Trail

The Boston Women's Heritage Trail is a series of walking tours in Boston, Massachusetts, leading past sites important to Boston women's history. The tours wind through several neighborhoods, including the Back Bay and Beacon Hill, commemorating women such as Abigail Adams, Amelia Earhart, and Phillis Wheatley. The guidebook includes seven walks and introduces more than 200 Boston women.[1]

The BWHT was created in 1989 by a group of Boston schoolteachers, librarians, and students. It is funded by the non-profit Boston Educational Development Foundation. The BWHT presents teacher workshops, guided walks, and other activities to promote women's history.[2]

Walking tours

The list of BWHT walking tours currently includes tours of the Back Bay (East), Back Bay (West), Beacon Hill, Charlestown, Chinatown/South Cove, Dorchester, Downtown, Jamaica Plain, Lower Roxbury, Roxbury, the South End, and West Roxbury. It also includes the Artists Walk, which focuses on local women artists, and the Ladies Walk, which commemorates Abigail Adams, Lucy Stone, and Phillis Wheatley.[3]


The Artists walk centers on the Back Bay, where many women artists have lived, worked, and exhibited. The walk was designed to complement the 2001 Museum of Fine Arts exhibition, A Studio of Her Own: Women Artists in Boston 1870–1940. Women mentioned include Helen M. Knowlton, Anne Whitney, and others.[4]

Back Bay East

The Back Bay East walk begins and ends at the Public Garden. Women mentioned include:[5]

Also mentioned are Fisher College, Simmons College, and the Winsor School.

Back Bay West

This walk starts at the Boston Public Library in Copley Square and ends at the Boston Women's Memorial on the Commonwealth Avenue mall. Women mentioned include:[6]

Beacon Hill

The Beacon Hill walk begins at the State House and winds through Beacon Hill, often in parallel with the Black Heritage Trail. Women mentioned include:[7]


Women mentioned on the Charlestown walk include:[8]

Chinatown/South Cove

The Chinatown/South Cove walk begins at the Boston Common Visitor Center, passes through Chinatown, and ends at Park Square. Women mentioned include:[9]


The Uphams Corner walk in Dorchester, developed by students at Codman Academy, is the first in a planned series of Dorchester walks. Women mentioned include:[10]

  • Alice Stone Blackwell, women's suffragist, journalist, and human rights advocate
  • Elida Rumsey Fowle, Civil War volunteer and adoptive mother of two emancipated slave children
  • Sarah Wentworth Apthorp Morton, poet
  • Anna Clapp Harris Smith, founder of the Animal Rescue League
  • Hepzibah Swan, socialite and art patron
  • Geraldine Trotter, editor and activist
  • "Ann & Betty", two slaves buried in Dorchester's oldest graveyard
  • Local women's abolitionist groups


Starting at the State House and ending at the corner of Franklin and Washington Streets, the Downtown walk passes some of Boston's oldest historic sites. Women mentioned include:[11]

Jamaica Plain

Women mentioned on the Jamaica Plain walk include:[12]

Ladies Walk

The Ladies Walk celebrates the lives of First Lady Abigail Adams, suffragist Lucy Stone, and poet Phillis Wheatley. It starts at the Boston Women's Memorial on Commonwealth Avenue and ends at Faneuil Hall.[13]

Lower Roxbury

Women mentioned on the Lower Roxbury walk include:[14]

North End Walk

The North End walk begins at Faneuil Hall, passes through the North End, and ends at St. Leonard's Church, one of the first Italian churches in the U.S. It overlaps at several points with the Freedom Trail. Women mentioned on this walk include:[15]


Women mentioned on the Roxbury walk include:[16]

South End

The South End walk starts at Back Bay Station and ends at the Boston Center for the Arts. Women mentioned on the Sound End walk include:[17]

West Roxbury

Women mentioned on the West Roxbury walk include:[19]

See also


  1. "BWHT History". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  2. "Funding and Sponsors". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  3. "Take a Tour". Boston Women's Heritage Trail. Archived from the original on 2016-06-15. Retrieved 2016-01-12.
  4. "Artists". Boston Women's Heritage Trail. Archived from the original on 2014-03-04. Retrieved 2016-01-12.
  5. "Back Bay East". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  6. "Back Bay West". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  7. "Beacon Hill". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  8. "Charlestown". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  9. "Chinatown/South Cove". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  10. "Dorchester". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  11. "Downtown". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  12. "Jamaica Plain". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  13. "Ladies Walk". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  14. "Lower Roxbury". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  15. "North End". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  16. "Roxbury". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  17. "South End". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.
  18. Scheible, Sue (Apr 21, 2016). "Hanson sculptor who created Tubman memorial hails news of $20 bill". Wicked Local.
  19. "West Roxbury". Boston Women's Heritage Trail.

Further reading

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