Visit Boston Massachusetts
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Boston Harbor Islands National Park

Written by Julie Greiner
This area includes 30 islands situated within the Greater Boston shoreline. The islands are rich in natural and cultural resources. The 30 islands are managed by a unique, 13 member Partnership which includes the National Park Service and other public and private organizations. An advisory council provides a mechanism for public involvement. The city's bustle is replaced by the rustle of sea breezes, squadrons of shorebirds circling and tiny crabs scampering across tidal pools. A relaxing day on one or more of the Boston Harbor Islands will not be forgotten.

Peddock's and Gallops Islands

Peddock has been used by farmers since 1634. Peddock's proximity
to the mainland ensured a prominent military role. Said to be the site of a patriot infantrymen's raid on a Loyalist farm, Peddock's also saw over 600 patriot militiamen stationed on the island in 1776, to guard the harbor against the return of British troops. It is one of the many harbor islands known to be used by American Indians prior to European settlement.

Gallops in the 1830's was a popular summer resort with an inn and restaurant, perhaps because of its legendary association with pirate lore.
Boston Harbor Islands
One pirate, "Long Ben" Avery, is said to have buried a treasure of diamonds on the island, although nothing has ever been found. Gallops features a sandy beach and has picnic areas, hiking paths, guided walks, historic ruins, and a rather large rabbit population.

George and Lovells Islands

George Island is comprised of two drumlins, rising out of the bay like other nearby islands. This island was used for agriculture for two hundred years until 1825 when the U.S. Government acquired the island for coastal defense. Lovells was named for Captain William Lovell, an early settler of Dorchester, notably the 74-gun French warship
Magnifique in 1782.

Grape Island

Grape may have been cultivated prior to European colonization. Euro-Americans farmed and grazed the island for three hundred years, up until the 1940s. Since the abandonment of agricultural use in the 1940s, the natural succession of vegetation has created a wooded and shrubby landscape.

Thompson Island and the World's End

Thompson today is home to the Willauer School and the site of an Outward Bound program that brings together more than 5,000 students and adults each year in an outdoor learning program. Special event and conference facilities are also available.
Boston Skyline
Thompson Island is open by arrangement: call (617) 328-3900. The 157-acre Thompson Island features guided tours, hiking and picnicking within its beautiful natural settings. The World's End Island was a seasonal campsite or Native Americans. After European contact, farming continued for over 300 years. Deer Island is not an island. Once it was! But it has been connected to the mainland since Shirley Gut, once separating the island from Winthrop, was filled in by beach erosion by the famous 1938 hurricane.
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Last Updated: September 23, 2015