Tour Guide at Granary Burying Ground on Boston's Freedom TrailPark Street Church, Seen from Granary Burying Ground
Close up of Park Street Church's Door to Granary Burying Ground
Park Street Church, Seen from Granary Burying Ground
Franklin Family Monument at Boston's Granary Burying Ground
Hi! I'm writing a mystery that begins in the Granary Burying Ground, on Boston's Freedom Trail. I've visited the site and will visit it again, but there a couple of questions I'd like to ask that would help me until I can get there.
1) Is there a sign or a policy or anything that dissuades tourists from smoking or eating on historic sites like the Granary?
2) Is there an access to the Granary from the back of the Park Street Church (even if it's usually locked?)
It would be very helpful if you could respond to these questions.
Susan's reply: Hi Suellen - I'm happy to help! Even though I've walked through the Granary Burying Ground dozens, maybe hundreds, of times as it's one of my favorite historic Boston sites, I couldn't answer your questions with any certainty, so I stopped by again a few days ago.
Here are the answers to your questions, based on what I saw:
1) No signs about smoking or eating - but out of the 100 or so visitors scattered throughout the graveyard, I didn't see anyone doing either of these things. I'm also fairly certain that I never have, as it would be a jarring note - after all, this is a cemetery, even though it's also one of Boston's famous tourist attractions. The Burying Ground itself is spotless - no trash. People do smoke and eat, and especially carry water bottles and coffee cups, as they walk along Tremont Street outside of the Burying Ground.
2) There is, in fact, a door on the side of Park Street Church that opens onto the Burying Ground - you can see a couple of the photos that I took above. It was locked the day that I was there, and looked generally unused. There may be even a couple more doors toward the back - looking at the 2nd and 3rd photo, they'd be to your right. I could not figure out if they're accessible through the church, or if they come from other parts of the building. When you come here, you could explore (and perhaps, since you're writing fiction, "create" a secret tunnel!).
Please write back and let us know when your mystery is finished - I'll look forward to reading it, as it obviously has a fascinating setting!
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