Fodor's Expert Review Chestnut Street
Delicacy and grace characterize virtually every structure on this street, from the fanlights above the entryways to the wrought-iron boot scrapers on the steps. Author and explorer Francis Parkman lived here, as did the lawyer Richard Henry Dana (who wrote Two Years Before the Mast), and 19th-century actor Edwin Booth, brother of John Wilkes Booth. Edwin Booth's sometime residence, 29A, dates from 1800, and is the oldest house on the south slope of the hill. Also note the Swan Houses, at Nos. 13, 15, and 17, commissioned from Charles Bulfinch by Hepzibah Swan as dowry gifts for her three daughters. Complete with Adam-style entrances, marble columns, and recessed arches, they are Chestnut Street at its most beautiful.