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A walk through The Crooked and Narrow Streets of Boston

I recently had the honor of writing a new foreword to Annie H. Thwing's classic, The Crooked and Narrow Streets of Boston, 1630-1822, published in a new softcover edition by the New England Historic Genealogical Society (

Excerpted from my foreword:

"'Boston,' Annie Haven Thwing wrote, "has been a prolific field for writers of fiction. Hawthorne, Cooper, and many others have drawn on its people, streets, and houses for interesting stories which have attracted the imagination of children as well as grown-ups.' ... Thwing chose to write about Boston in a very different way. The result was her beloved and highly informative Crooked and Narrow Streets ..., a book originally published in 1920 and primarily drawn from a collection of nearly 125,000 index cards ... [at] the Massachusetts Historical Society.

Addressing speculation about how Boston's crooked and narrow streets were formed, Thwing mused 'there are even some today who in all seriousness will say, 'My grandmother always said Boston was laid out by the cows.' Nearly hundred years after Thwing's book was released, that bovine tradition persists!

I hope you will share Annie Thwing's enchanting walk through history via the crooked and narrow streets she so lovingly guides us through:

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