Something to look at while you're recuperating from shoveling snow and ice

The British Library has posted more than a million images from books in its collection, and many of them are of Boston, from this engraving of the three hills that gave Boston its original name (today memorialized in Tremont Street) to images of 17th-century colonial coinage to drawings of 18th and 19th century buildings, such as this fortress colonial (it's way too big to be just a garrison colonial) on Salem Street:

Mansion on Salem Street

The collection is also big on signatures of colonial dignitaries, including Cotton Mather:

Cotton Mather signature

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    They were really more like

    They were really more like hills - Cotton Hill was where Pemberton Square is now, and the awesomely-named Mt. Whoredom (aka Mt. Vernon) was at Louisburg Square. Both were leveled, along with part of Beacon Hill, mostly to provide fill.

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    Hills of fill

    I can't find the reference but I think Cotton Hill ended up going to fill in between the piers coming in from the waterfront -- around Faneuil Hall and that area. Mt. Vernon went west and north towards the Charles and the chunk they took out of Beacon Hill ended up at the end of the Commons, the Garden and very beginning of Back Bay. Back Bay was filled by trainloads of dirt coming from all over quite a while after the other two hills were gone. Anyone have a correction/reference on that?

    Cotton Hill

    The material from Cotton Hill (Pemberton) was used to fill the area around Nashua St., done in 1835, as part of a real estate deal. Beacon Hill was cut down in 1811, mainely out of concern for collapse of upper areas after land owners dug into the hillside

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