Bloodlust: Mysteries of Victorian Boston

Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Experience hosted by Michael

  1. 2 hours
  2. Hosted in English
Excellent value
Guests say it's well worth the price.

What you'll do

In the late 1800s, Boston experienced a rash of gruesome murders and unexplained phenomena. The “Boston Medical and Surgical Journal” observed, “The increase in the number of the criminally insane has been exceptionally rapid…” Most interesting was the way one community reacted to this – The South End, the country’s oldest and largest Victorian neighborhood.

Not only was there a reawakening of the notorious Witchcraft Trials that happened 200 years earlier, but people were also accused of being vampires and conversing with the dead – all while serial murders and molesters lurked just out of sight.

Explore this quaint post-Civil War suburb, its architectural gems and strange statuary that tourist rarely get to see. Then delve into the concerns of the people who lived here, their art, science, politics and stories of true crime, with demonstrations on Victorian phantasmagoria and the new fields of forensics and toxicology.

Did you know that one of Boston’s wealthiest entrepreneurs was a woman? So was America’s first accused vampire. We’ve also hosted mad scientists, homicidal healthcare workers and psychologists who treated the mentally ill in unsavory ways.

Buried the beneath this neighborhood's eye-catching English gardens and breathtaking brick rowhouses is a unique experience you won’t want to miss, and all within a few blocks of Copley Square and Back Bay.
Other things to note
We will walk outside, about a mile, through the streets and parks of the South End. We will see architecturally significant homes and churches, the background for a number of historic movie and shows. There will be some graphic discussion of violence and murder. Participant discretion is advised.
In the late 1800s, Boston experienced a rash of gruesome murders and unexplained phenomena. The “Boston Medical and Surgical Journal” observed, “The increase in the number of the criminally insane has been exceptionally rapid…” Most interesting was the way one community reacted to this – The South End, the country’s oldest and largest Victorian neighborhood.

Not only was there a reawakening of the notorious Witchcraft Trials that happe…

What's included

  • Equipment
    Umbrella (please request)

Meet your Host, Michael

Host on Airbnb since 2019
  • 434 Reviews
  • Identity verified
Hi, I'm Michael,

As an experienced educator, artist, historian and tour guide, I will provide a wealth of information about my neighborhood and its place in one of the most historically complex cities in North America.
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From $34/ person

Join 2 other guests
$34 per person
Join 2 other guests
$34 per person
$34 per person

Where you'll be

Designed to reflect the refined, English sensibilities of the 1800s, the South End has gone through many changes over the years. It was created as a suburban neighborhood for the upper-middle class. In the 1900s, it became a haven for cultural diversity, emigration and women’s rights. Enigmatically, it has also been an urban wasteland, a hotbed of crime and a mecca for artists. Now, it's some of the most expensive real estate in the country.

Rated 4.94 out of 5 from 434 reviews.

Erika
January 2022
Great experience to do when visiting Boston. Michael was a great story teller and knows his history would recommend anyone to try this experience
Bekah
January 2022
Michael was great! I think we had a unique advantage as it was just our group but he interacted with us a lot, asked questions and had us guess, and elaborated on topics we expressed interest in. Saw some beautiful sights and heard a fantastic story! Definitely recommend
Tess
January 2022
Michael is very knowledgeable, informative, and personable! personalizes the experience to your interests and picks up on what you enjoy quickly. could definitely see us going on this tour again and bringing other friends to learn more about the area.
Karen
January 2022
Michael is the best storyteller I’ve ever met! Listening to the Victorian murder cases he told was like watching the American Horror Stories show or my favorite Penny Dreadful - full of details and rich historical context. Michael is also super knowledgeable about this part of history and was able to answer any random question from me. Highly highly recommend his tour to anyone who enjoys thrillers and detective stories!
Marya
December 2021
Michael did a great job storytelling. We really enjoyed the process of trying to solve a murder mystery as he walked us through clues along the way. Lots of fun for my family. Thank you Michael.
Jessica
December 2021
It’s a great way to see a different part of Boston when you’re from out of town. You get some historical mystery. My friends and I enjoyed the tour listening to Michael telling us the history of murder and mayhem that happened in the area during the time period.

Choose from available dates

10 available
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Things to know

Guest requirements

Guests ages 11 and up can attend, up to 30 guests total. Parents can also bring children under 2 years of age.
All participants must wear a protective face covering and practice social distancing.

What to bring

Weather appropriate clothing
Comfortable shoes
An umbrella (if necessary)
Water to stay hydrated

Cancellation policy

Cancel up to 7 days before the Experience start time for a full refund, or within 24 hours of booking as long as the booking is made more than 48 hours before the start time.