Built in 1723, the Old North Church is the oldest standing church in Boston. It is also the tallest church, its steeple reaching 191 feet. On the night of April 18, 1775, British Lieutenant Colonel Smith marched with 700 British soldiers to Concord on a mission to disarm the rebels.
Using a plan devised by Paul Revere, Robert Newman climbed to the top of this church and lit two lanterns to alert patriots that the Redcoats were coming up the Charles River, thus inspiring Longfellow's famous verse, "One if by land, two if by sea." The battles of Lexington and Concord that followed were the first of the American Revolutionary War.
In the 23rd century, the church has been overrun by feral ghouls. The secret headquarters of the synth-liberating Railroad is hidden in the catacombs beneath the historic site. The tombs in the crypt inside Railroad HQ include those of Major John Pitcairn and William Shippard.
Outside the building is a pre-War plaque and a Freedom Trail marker. The location is the eighth and final stop on the Freedom Trail, with the code "1:R." Also outside near the marker is a monument in remembrance of Paul Revere's "midnight ride" of American Revolution history.
The entrance leads to a small entry room with some broken display cases. Through a pair of holes in the back wall is the main interior of the church, with two partially destroyed balconies reachable by stairs at the back or a collapsed section to the right. A door in the northeast corner near the entrance leads to the tunnels and catacombs beneath the church.
At the western end of the main floor is a short staircase up to a door exiting to the Old North Church steeple in the exterior environment. The door exits into the bottom of the steeple stairwell, which can be used to reach the roof of the church. The steeple and roof feature a caps stash, a sniper rifle, and excellent views.
Returning inside, the fairly long basement tunnel ends at a golden Freedom Trail marker on the wall. The marker consists of the phrase "The Freedom Trail - Boston" on a spinnable wheel, with a fixed arrow in the center on a button that may be pressed to select the indicated letters in sequence. Using the marker in this way to spell the word "railroad" will open a secret door and allow progress in the quest Road to Freedom. After completing additional quests, Railroad HQ will become accessible past another nearby secret door opened by Desdemona.
- Road to Freedom: The Sole Survivor has heard of a group that aims to take on the Institute and only has the clue, "Follow the Freedom Trail." To find the Railroad, they have to start at Boston Common.
- If the player character sides with the Brotherhood of Steel and destroys the Railroad, several Brotherhood soldiers will occupy the building.
- When at this location, companions make comments, which are activated at two locations: at the nave and in the catacombs.
|Curie||nave||"The Old North Church. Such history."|
|catacombs||"Is anyone famous buried here, you think?"|
|Danse||nave||"" lacking in technology.|
|Deacon||nave||"No place like home."|
|catacombs||"Part of me still feels its wrong using this place as a base. But we didn't have a lot of options."|
The Old North Church appears only in Fallout 4.
Behind the scenes
- The Old North Church was created by level designer Justin Schram. In designing the layout of the in-game location, he wanted to honor the history and space of the real-world church, but also make it fun to explore for the player. In particular, he recalled the controversy surrounding Resistance: Fall of Man (mistakenly referencing it as a Call of Duty game in a Q&A session) for its depiction of Manchester Cathedral, and wanted to avoid such issues with the Old North Church. He also watched History Channel specials exploring the Revolutionary War catacombs under the real-world church for inspiration.
- At the top of the church steeple, there are two lit lanterns, a reference to the historical use of this church to signal British troop movements on April 18, 1775, which later came to be remembered by the phrase "One if by land, two if by sea." Preston Garvey comments on this if he is taken into the church, and explains its connection to the Minutemen of Massachusetts.
- The tombs of Major John Pitcairn and William Shippard can be found in the crypt inside Railroad HQ. Pitcairn was a Scottish Marine who was interred in the Old North Church after being killed in the assault of Bunker Hill in 1775, while Shippard was a resident of the British colony of Massachusetts, passing away in 1744. There is also another tomb for Samuel Watts and Peter Dickerman. All of these tombs can also be found in the real-world Old North Church.
- Other plaques that appear in the crypt also correspond to tombs found in the real-world Old North Church:
- No. 26: John Jutau, Peter St. Medard, George Clark
- No. 8: Heirs of the Rev. Dr. Walter - Lynde Walter, Wm. Walter, Nath'l Smith, John Odin
- No. 9: Shubael Bell and Robert Fennelly
- Sam Weekes and Eliz. Wheelwright
- coc OldNorthChurch01 will teleport the player character into the Old North Church, just past the puzzle door. The console command tcl must then be used to return through the wall and solve the puzzle properly. Exiting through the front entrance will then work as expected.[verified] In some cases, the game will freeze when attempting to enter certain buildings in Boston, including the Old North Church, making the quest Road to Freedom impossible to complete. The console command
- coc OldNorthChurch01 to teleport directly inside.[verified] Sometimes the Old North Church's entrance can't be accessed, making it impossible to proceed. Saving/quicksaving and then reloading should restore the door to functionality. Otherwise, reload a previous save from before entering the Old North Church's general area, or use the console command
- Boston landmark inscriptions; Old North Church
- Fallout 4 Vault Dweller's Survival Guide Collector's Edition p. 466-467: "[13.02] OLD NORTH CHURCH
Built in 1723, the Old North Church is the oldest standing church in Boston. Its 191-foot-tall steeple also makes it the tallest church in Boston. On the night of April 18, 1775, Lieutenant Colonel Smith marched with 700 British soldiers to Concord on a mission to disarm the rebels. Using a plan devised by Paul Revere, Robert Newman climbed to the top of this church and lit two lanterns to alert patriots that the Redcoats were coming up the Charles River. This inspired Longfellow’s famous verse “One if by land, two if by sea.” The battles of Lexington and Concord that followed would start the American Revolution.
This is part of the Freedom Trail. The number “1” is daubed on the circular ground plaque pointing at the letter “R.” The insignia of the Railroad can be seen above the information plaque at the entrance.
The Railroad Headquarters is the base of operations for this faction. It contains their senior members (two of whom offer excellent trading opportunities). There’s a wall showing the “code” the Railroad uses for marking stashes and areas they’ve investigated. Be sure to utilize the escape tunnel, which allows quicker access to and from this location in the future. It brings you out by the river, northwest of the Old North Church."
(Fallout 4 Vault Dweller's Survival Guide Map)
- Alumni Guest: Justin Schram From Bethesda Game Studios (reference starts at 1:02:17)
Justin Schram: "One of the spaces I worked on on Fallout 4 was the Old North Church, so I tried as much as I could to get the feel for what that actual space was, and to honor the history that was there. I was really worried, because I remember, I think it was a Call of Duty game that like, also used a church and they got all this hate mail from the church and the people that went there. I was really worried about that happening here, so I was just trying as much as I could to honor what the space was and the history there. Another interesting thing about that is that there are these, like, Revolutionary War catacombs under the Old North Church, and I watched a lot of, like, History Channel specials of them walking through to get a lot of inspirations for what the feel is there."