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The Old State House was the seat of Massachusetts' colonial, and later state legislature, from 1713 to 1798.
However, the assembly had rather limited power in that the governor had the power to veto anything they decided, and on some occasions, the governor had dissolved the assembly out of stubbornness due to an opposing vote.
In 1767, a gallery was installed above the meeting floor in the state house so that the general public could watch their legislature at work.
On 5 March 1770, crowds swelled in front of the Old Meeting House; many citizens had heard the church bells, which were used to indicate fires, and rushed into the streets. While there, with tensions mounting between Boston citizens and British soldiers, the soldiers fired into the crowd, killing five people in an event that would later be labeled the Boston Massacre.
Eventually, the government moved out of the Old State House in 1798, to which the building was turned over to merchants, including a wine seller and a wig maker.