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Guns fired across downtown and howitzers blasted on the Common as the Ancient and Honorables once again change leadership

Minutemen fire a round at Tremont and Park streets

Today's the first Monday in June and that means it was once again time for the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company, founded in 1638, to hold its annual march through downtown to commemorate its changing of the guard.

Although the company itself fired no weapons, it was accompanied, as usual, by troops of Minutemen, who periodically stopped to fire their muskets into the air. And on the Common, three howitzers from the Massachusetts National Guard's 101st Field Artillery Group, positioned next to the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial, fired 19 rounds as Gov. Healey and Lt. Gov. Driscoll walked onto the Common.

Howitzers go boom:

Howitzers go boom

From their headquarters at Faneuil Hall, the company marched up Congress Street and then State, where they passed the Old State House:

Ancients and Honorables in front of the Old State House

Healey was escorted to review the assembled companies and troops:

Gov. Healey escorted to review the troops

A few ladies supported the laddies:


After firing a round, it was time to reload the muskets for another:


A row of schoolkids lined the path through the Common; some saluted the passing companies:

Kid saluting

Unlike muskets, pointy pikes never misfire or jam:

Men with pikes


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Must be wetting themselves in anger.

Voting closed 11

Some Minutemen fired off a round and a van's burglar alarm went off.

Voting closed 15

Immediately take to social media and complain about it?

I hope the van wasn’t too inconvenienced being awaking from its daytime nap like that. Scary stuff!

Voting closed 18

That’s just so terrible. No one has ever been disturbed by other things that make noise like BLM protest mega phones. How will such a sleepy little down recover from noise like this?

Voting closed 17

...over the sound of your relentless whining.

Voting closed 27

This event should be moved to the first SUNDAY in June. It's beyond absurd to have cannons going off on a Monday afternoon in downtown Boston with nothing mentioned in advance in the Globe or other local media. It scared the shit out of multiple friends of mine who have offices around the Common. Many of them ran off calls and came down to the street, only to (fortunately) find there wasn't general panic and people running everywhere. None of their landlords or companies sent email alerts in advance, either.

Voting closed 14

Can’t expect people to get used to new traditions like this overnight.

Voting closed 72

Yeah, but this isn't July 4th, Patriots Day or Evacuation Day...it's a footnote holiday that most locals, even those of us who have lived here for decades, don't know/remember. My point is that celebrating it on a weekday (with little notice) scared thousands of people needlessly.

Voting closed 14

should leave the city if you need a continual daytime cocoon of silence. What, did it interrupt your post-lunchtime nap?

I get that you believe everyone and everything ought to cater to you, but here are a lot of people telling you: Wah wah wah, deal with it next time, some of us like it.

Voting closed 24

i lived in boston for 18 years, and have been working in the financial district for 20 years and never heard of this parade until yesterday when i heard musket and cannon fire and saw haphazard police roadblocks and no signage.

perhaps it was because of recently watching the netflix documentary about the marathon bombing, but what i saw and heard yesterday was oddly reminiscent of what i experienced in 2013 in the aftermath of the bombing.

Voting closed 8

Grab your smartphone and tell it to remind you of this event, but yesterday, every year going forward. Thus on this date on the year 3592, old reckoning, back on the arid dust plains that were Boston Common, the biomechanoids firing muskets and cannons won't startle you.

Voting closed 12

It's only a matter of time before this is cancelled like everything else that bothers a few people.

Voting closed 25

Per bombulum nostri cognoscent nos.

Voting closed 7

Given that my kids were on a field trip downtown today, I was a bit alarmed and worried reading the headline at first. Took me a second to see that this wasn’t some dangerous melee. Maybe lead with it not being some dangerous event? (And, no, I have no idea who these folks are, and thus have no expectation for this to happen in early June.)

Voting closed 10

Oh no those poor kids!

Voting closed 20

claiming hearing damage from unexpectedly coming upon this event while walking through the Common?

Voting closed 6

June Day - that's what they call it - is always a downtown pleasure on a fine day.

It's a great club, too. They take international trips together, and also host other honorary military societies.

The naysayers are the usual scolds and killjoys.

Voting closed 9