Welcome to Boston
Boston is the capital and largest city of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. The city is located in Suffolk County, Massachusetts, in the northeastern United States. The largest city in New England, Boston is considered the economic and cultural center of the entire region. The city, which had an estimated population of 599,351 in 2007, lies at the center of the Cambridge–Boston-Quincy metropolitan area—the 10th-largest metropolitan area (5th largest CSA) in the U.S., with a population of 4.5 million. In 1630, Puritan colonists from England founded the city on the Shawmut Peninsula. During the late eighteenth century Boston was the location of several major events during the American Revolution, including the Boston Massacre and the Boston Tea Party. Several early battles of the American Revolution, such as the Battle of Bunker Hill and the Siege of Boston, occurred within the city and surrounding areas. After American independence was attained Boston became a major shipping port and manufacturing center, and its rich history now attracts 16.3 million visitors annually. Boston's colleges and universities have a major impact on the city and region's economy. Not only are they major employers, but they also attract high-tech industries to the city and surrounding region. Boston is home to technology companies such as EMC Corp. and Analog Devices as well as E-Commerce companies VistaPrint and CSN Stores. Boston is also a major hub for biotechnology companies, including Millennium Pharmaceuticals, Merck & Co., Millipore, Genzyme, and Biogen Idec. According to a 2003 report by the Boston Redevelopment Authority, students enrolled in Boston's colleges and universities contribute $4.8 billion annually to the city's economy. Boston also receives the highest amount of annual funding from the National Institutes of Health of all cities in the United States. Tourism comprises a large part of Boston's economy. In 2004 tourists spent $7.9 billion and made the city one of the ten most popular tourist locations in the country. Other important industries include financial services, especially mutual funds and insurance. Boston-based Fidelity Investments helped popularize the mutual fund in the 1980s, and has made Boston one of the top financial cities in the United States.