Boston

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This article is about the city in the U.S. state of Massachusetts. For the town in England, see Boston, Lincolnshire. For other uses, see Boston (disambiguation).
State capital of Massachusetts, U.S.

City in Massachusetts
Boston, Massachusetts
City
City of Boston
Clockwise from top: Downtown; Massachusetts State House; Back Bay and the Charles River; Fenway Park

Flag

Seal
Nickname(s): 
See Nicknames of Boston
Motto(s): 
Sicut patribus sit Deus nobis (Latin)
"As God was with our fathers, so may He be with us"
Interactive map outlining Boston
Boston
Location within Massachusetts
Show map of Massachusetts
Boston
Location within the United States
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Boston
Location within North America
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Coordinates: 42°21′29″N 71°03′49″W / 42.35806°N 71.06361°W / 42.35806; -71.06361Coordinates: 42°21′29″N 71°03′49″W / 42.35806°N 71.06361°W / 42.35806; -71.06361
Country United States
State Massachusetts
CountySuffolk
RegionNew England
Historic countriesKingdom of England
Commonwealth of England
Kingdom of Great Britain
Historic coloniesMassachusetts Bay Colony in the Province of Massachusetts Bay
Settled (town)
September 7, 1630
(date of naming, Old Style)[a]
Incorporated (city)March 19, 1822
Named forBoston, Lincolnshire
Government
 • TypeStrong mayor / Council
 • MayorMarty Walsh (D)
 • CouncilBoston City Council
Area
 • City89.63 sq mi (232.14 km2)
 • Land48.42 sq mi (125.41 km2)
 • Water41.21 sq mi (106.73 km2)
 • Urban
1,770 sq mi (4,600 km2)
 • Metro
4,500 sq mi (11,700 km2)
 • CSA10,600 sq mi (27,600 km2)
Elevation
141 ft (43 m)
Population
 (2018)[2][3][4][5][6]
 • City694,583
 • Density14,344/sq mi (5,538/km2)
 • Urban
4,180,000 (US: 10th)
 • Metro
4,628,910 (US: 10th)[1]
 • CSA
8,041,303 (US: 6th)
 • Demonym
Bostonian
Time zoneUTC−5 (EST)
 • Summer (DST)UTC−4 (EDT)
ZIP Codes
53 ZIP Codes[7]
  • 02108–02137, 02163, 02196, 02199, 02201, 02203–02206, 02210–02212, 02215, 02217, 02222, 02126, 02228, 02241, 02266, 02283–02284, 02293, 02295, 02297–02298, 02467 (also includes parts of Newton and Brookline)
Area codes617 and 857
FIPS code25-07000
GNIS feature ID0617565
Primary AirportLogan International Airport
Interstates
Commuter RailMBTA Commuter Rail
Rapid TransitMBTA Subway
WebsiteBoston.gov

Boston is the capital and most populous city[8] of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in the United States, as well as the 21st most populous city in the United States. The city proper covers 48 square miles (124 km2) with an estimated population of 694,583 in 2018,[3] making it also the most populous city in New England.[2] Boston is the seat of Suffolk County as well, although the county government was disbanded on July 1, 1999.[9] The city is the economic and cultural anchor of a substantially larger metropolitan area known as Greater Boston, a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) home to a census-estimated 4.8 million people in 2016 and ranking as the tenth-largest such area in the country.[10] As a combined statistical area (CSA), this wider commuting region is home to some 8.2 million people, making it the sixth most populous in the United States.[11]

Boston is one of the oldest municipalities in the United States, founded on the Shawmut Peninsula in 1630 by Puritan settlers from England.[12][13] It was the scene of several key events of the American Revolution, such as the Boston Massacre, the Boston Tea Party, the Battle of Bunker Hill, and the Siege of Boston. Upon gaining U.S. independence from Great Britain, it continued to be an important port and manufacturing hub as well as a center for education and culture.[14][15] The city has expanded beyond the original peninsula through land reclamation and municipal annexation. Its rich history attracts many tourists, with Faneuil Hall alone drawing more than 20 million visitors per year.[16] Boston's many firsts include the United States' first public park (Boston Common, 1634), first public or state school (Boston Latin School, 1635)[17] and first subway system (Tremont Street Subway, 1897).[18]

Today, Boston is a thriving port city.[19] The Boston area's many colleges and universities make it an international center of higher education,[20] including law, medicine, engineering, and business, and the city is considered to be a world leader in innovation and entrepreneurship, with nearly 2,000 startups.[21][22][23] Boston's economic base also includes finance,[24] professional and business services, biotechnology, information technology, and government activities.[25] Households in the city claim the highest average rate of philanthropy in the United States;[26] businesses and institutions rank among the top in the country for environmental sustainability and investment.[27] The city has one of the highest costs of living in the United States[28][29] as it has undergone gentrification,[30] though it remains high on world livability rankings.[31]