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A History of Boston
February 4 @ 2:00 pm - 3:30 pm
A talk by author Daniel Dain.
At the Needham History Center, 1147 Central Avenue, Needham.
Boston is today one of the world’s greatest cities, first in higher education, hospitals, life science
companies, and sports teams. It was the home of the Great Puritan Migration, the American
Revolution, the Industrial Revolution, the first civil rights movement, the abolition movement, and
the women’s rights movement. But the city that gave us the first use of ether as anesthesia, the
telephone, technicolor film, and the mutual fund—the city where Martin Luther King Jr. and
Coretta Scott founded their world-changing partnership—was also the hub of the anti-immigration
movement, the divisive busing era, and decades of self-inflicted decay. Boston has the most
important history of any American city. Yet its history has never been given a comprehensive
treatment until now.
Join Needham author Dan Dain as he acts as your tour guide from the arrival of First Peoples up
to the election of Boston’s first woman and person of color as mayor. Dain’s masterful work
explores the policies and practices that took Boston from its highest heights to its lowest lows and
back again, and examines the central role that density, diversity, and good urban design play in the
success of cities like Boston.
Dan Dain was born in Boston and grew up in Newton before leaving the area to attend Vassar College and Michigan Law School. Since then, he has spent his entire professional career as a lawyer in Boston. He writes and lectures widely on land-use law and urban planning. Dan is active in the community. He is the manager of a private equity fund that invests in independent local restaurants; chairs the arts company White Snake Projects; chairs the Town of Needham’s Golf Club Advisory Committee; is on the board of the Vilna Shul, Boston’s Center for Jewish Culture; and is a co-founder and treasurer of the Needham Land Trust, among many others. He loves giving tours of Boston to friends and visitors, and he’s known for his ability to give restaurant recommendations for any cuisine or location around Greater Boston.
This talk is free and open to everyone. Refreshments will be served.
We thank our Program Sponsor, North Hill, for their kind support of our Program Calendar.