At one time this route was the only way in or out of Boston. Still an isthmus in the early 17th century, the town was almost entirely surrounded by water. Here at the corner of Washington and E Berkeley streets ''Mayflower'' era colonists built gated earthworks to keep out natives and unwanted animals. A gallows stood outside the gate, where thieves and murderers would be executed. These defenses were constantly being improved, especially during the colonial era. As time went on, however, the water was filled in by earth and the gate lost it's importance. Today there is no plaque or other signifier of this important spot, only a few signs at the nearby bus station. This noisy street corner could be easily skipped, or it could be a heady spot to contemplate the passage of time.
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Site of Boston town gate
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