Parks is hosting an event at the Swan Boats this Friday, August 26th to recognize the boats’ landmark status as well as the inclusion of Julia Paget in the Women’s Heritage Trail of Boston, two wonderful honors for our friends the Pagets and their incomparable contributions to the Garden and the city. In keeping with the acknowledgement of old-time tradition, they are offering 50 cent rides all day.
Robert Paget introduced the Swan Boat to the Boston Common in 1877. Sadly, he lived to see only one season of the boats in use. In 1878 his wife Julia, a young widow with four children, assumed full management of the new enterprise. At the time it was unheard of for a woman to run a business and she was required to gather signatures from local men to vouch for her business sense. Julia persevered to keep the family business alive and the Paget family still runs the business today!