The city of Boston, throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, revolutionized the way that people, especially immigrants were viewed throughout the nation. Not only did it change people’s views on people, but the city was also an industrial front, taking people’s ideas and creating the first of many technologies that would be widely used throughout the United States in the future.
Education was so important throughout the history of Boston. Schools were created, not just for the intelligent, wealthy, white citizens. Schools were built for both the blind and deaf, for the Catholic people, for musicians and artists, as well as for all of the cultures and races of the ever diversely growing city. Despite conflict, riots and unrest of the people not so willing to change their ideas, one theme always remained constant throughout Boston history; the idea that all people should have a right to education. One amazing example of this, is the Boston Public Library. This was the first library in the United States to have branches that reached out to as many people as possible. It was also a library that welcomed all people, no matter their race, gender, religion or culture. The library was also a great start to what would eventually become the museum district in Boston, bringing what we now know as the Museum of Fine Arts and the Museum of Science to the scene as extra resources for education in the city. Education was not the only thing that was widely encouraged in the historical city, however.
The idea of a community was of extreme importance to the people of Boston. From the abolitionists of the Union during the Civil War, to the creators of the Boston Common, one thing that has always been true is the sense of community that Bostonians wanted in their city. Despite radical extremists with different viewpoints that created conflict and hardship, especially for the Irish immigrants of Boston, Bostonians always managed to build the community to include everyone. People wanted to be a part of this community as well. As education in Boston grew, many immigrants tried to become academics or athletes, or become involved in politics in order to better become a member of the ever growing community. The community, however, was not the only thing growing. The people of Boston were constantly expanding the city and bringing new ideas that revolutionized technology in the United States.
Boston is a city home to many, many firsts, especially when it comes to technology and community equality. Bostonians built the first railroad in America to transport granite from Quincy in order to build the monument on Bunker Hill. Bostonians also build land which later became the south end, and a major revenue source for Boston. Boston is home to the first symphony orchestra and music schools which allowed people to come together to listen to music and create a culture for American music thanks to free lessons and more accessible performances. Boston is also home to the first Catholic Schools, and Jewish synagogues creating a more accepted religious community. Boston is also one of the first cities in the world to create a common park area owned by the people of the city, not to be used for development, top build the community and give the people a common space to express themselves, celebrate and even share a meal with one another.
So overall, despite the conflict that comes from creating a city with thousands of immigrants and ideas, Boston is really a city that continued to build itself and improve upon itself to benefit the community. All of the firsts and all of the advancements that Boston made over its history in the 19th and early 20th centuries have a significant impact, not only on the community of Boston today, but on communities all over the country. Boston really created a front to abolish slaves, include all people in community activities, and bring the true meaning of freedom to the country. While not all people may have agreed with every decision made by every influential person in Boston, the city really is the home to American communities and the true definition of a melting pot of cultures that creates that American culture
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