February 27, 2020

Museum Marks the 250th Anniversary of the Boston Massacre, March 5

Pop-up Talks, Artifact Installation, and an Author Talk

The Boston Massacre
The Boston Massacre
On March 5, 1770, British soldiers killed five Bostonians in what became known as the Boston Massacre, one of the crucial moments that led to the Revolutionary War. The Museum of the American Revolution will commemorate the 250th anniversary of the Boston Massacre with pop-up talks in the galleries, an artifact installation, and a discussion with author Serena Zabin on her new book The Boston Massacre: A Family Story.

“The Boston Massacre was a pivotal event in the lead-up to the Revolutionary War, serving as a unifying force among the colonies against Britain,” said Dr. R. Scott Stephenson, President and CEO of the Museum. “The anniversary of the Massacre this year signals the start of nationwide commemorations and celebrations of the events that led to the American Revolution, culminating in 2026, which will mark 250 years since the American colonies declared independence.”

From Wednesday, March 4 – Sunday, March 8, 2020, visitors can gather under the Museum’s lifelike recreation of Boston’s Liberty Tree and listen to a 10-minute talk exploring the Boston Massacre and how its aftermath led to the formation of our nation. Visitors can examine a reproduction of Paul Revere’s famous 1770 engraving of the event and learn how it was used as propaganda to stir up anti-British sentiment among the colonists.

Liberty Tree gallery
Liberty Tree gallery

Visitors also will encounter surprising stories, like that of Crispus Attucks, a dockworker of African and Native American descent killed during the Massacre and considered by many historians to be the first casualty of the American Revolution. The 10-minute talks will take place at 11:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 3:30 p.m. and are included with regular Museum admission.

Also in the Liberty Tree Gallery, visitors will be able to see a recently installed edition of the Boston Gazette newspaper from March 11, 1771, commemorating the first anniversary of the Boston Massacre. The newspaper will be on display beginning March 3. The newspaper addresses Boston Massacre anniversary commemorations, including an illuminated display of original art that Paul Revere displayed in the windows of his home. 

Looking ahead, on Tuesday, March 17 at 6 p.m., author Serena Zabin will discuss her new book The Boston Massacre: A Family Story, as part of the Museum’s History After Hours event. Zabin will explore the dynamics of the Boston Massacre and the human relationships behind the clash. A book signing will follow the event in front of the Museum store. Audiences that evening are also invited to play-test Witness to the Revolution, the video game about the Boston Massacre that Zabin is developing with her colleague Austin Mason. The talk and play-test are included with History After Hours admission of $10 (free for Members). Tickets are available for purchase by calling 215.253.6731 or online hereUPDATE: THIS AUTHOR TALK AND PLAY-TEST HAVE BEEN POSTPONED. 

About Serena Zabin
Serena Zabin is a professor of history and director of the American studies program at Carleton College. She is the author of Dangerous Economies: Status and Commerce in Imperial New York and The New York Conspiracy Trials of 1741: Daniel Horsmanden’s Journal of the Proceedings

About Museum of the American Revolution
The Museum of the American Revolution uncovers and shares compelling stories about the diverse people and complex events that sparked America’s ongoing experiment in liberty, equality, and self-government. Through the Museum’s unmatched collection, immersive galleries, powerful theater experiences, and interactive elements, visitors gain a deeper appreciation for how this nation came to be and feel inspired to consider their role in ensuring that the promise of the American Revolution endures. Located just steps away from Independence Hall, the Museum serves as a portal to the region’s many Revolutionary sites, sparking interest, providing context, and encouraging exploration. The Museum, which opened on April 19, 2017, is a private, non-profit, and non-partisan organization. For more information, visit www.AmRevMuseum.org or call 877.740.1776.