While drinking my morning coffee I stumbled across the following in the Boston Globe:
"In 1743, the first recorded town meeting in America was held, at Faneuil Hall in Boston."
from the Associated Press' "Today in History" feature.
This is wrong. The first recorded town meeting in America was held on 8 October 1633, where the citizens of Dorchester, Massachusetts "ordered that for the general good and well ordering of the affayres of the Plantation their shall be every Mooneday before the Court by eight of the Clocke in the morning, and p'sently upon the beating of the drum, a generall meeting of the inhabitants of the Plantation att the meeteing house, there to settle (and sett downe) such orders as may tend to the generall good as aforesayd." From the Fourth Report of the Record Commissioners: Dorchester Records (Boston, 1880)
While I can see not knowing about the Dorchester town meeting, anyone with any concept of American history should think to themselves that people didn't just sit around doing nothing for the first one hundred years or so. It wasn't as if Faneuil Hall was built and someone said, "You know, that building there would be perfect for our first town meeting." First Parish Dorchester is the oldest congregation in Boston and Dorchester also established the first public school paid for with taxes in 1639. The town set aside taxes received from Thompson's Island for the use of the school.