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Genuine Articles

Where to find the nation's most important piece of paper

genuinearticlesPhoto: Les Wood


ou don’t have to go to Washington to see an original copy of the U.S. Constitution. Of only nine remaining copies of the first edition of the Constitution written in 1787 and circulated to the states to stimulate discussion, one of the very few on public view is in Boston’s John Joseph Moakley federal courthouse.



Boston’s John Joseph Moakley federal courthouse includes $1.4 million worth of English oak paneling, hand-painted stenciling, judges’ chambers with private bathrooms and kitchens, and a $1.6 million pier. The $228 million price was so high it led to a moratorium on further federal courthouse construction.