Accessibility—Field Trips

The NEH Summer Institute on Space, Place, and the Humanities uses Boston as a laboratory for exploring themes of space and place. Consequently, field trips are a significant component of the Summer Institute. On this page we want to provide information on the accessibility of the planned field trip locations. This page will be updated as we receive more information.

Black Heritage Trail:

Field Trip 1: Monday, July 24, 2017 (1:00pm-3:30pm) 

The Ranger guided tours of the Black Heritage Trail® are along paved streets and brick sidewalks.

The Museum of African American History’s Abiel Smith School and African Meeting House are both fully accessible by wheelchair users and have accessible restrooms.

The film “Building on a Firm Foundation” which is shown at the Abiel Smith School contains both audio and captions.

For a more detailed overview of the Black Heritage Trail’s accessibility options, please see:

Museum of Fine Arts (MFA):

Field Trip 2: Friday, July 28, 2017 (9:00am-11:30am) 

Entrances: The Linde Family Wing Entrance on Museum Road is reserved for schools, groups, and visitors with disabilities. The Huntington Entrance (465 Huntington Avenue) and the State Street Corporation Fenway Entrance (200 The Fenway) are accessible with a drop-off area in front, and ramps to the left and right of the stairs. All entrances are equipped with power-assist doors.

Wheelchairs and Rollators:  Manual wheelchairs and Rollators (walkers with wheels, padded seats, and backs) are available free of charge on a first-come, first-served basis at all entrances. Please return wheelchairs and Rollators after your visit. The MFA also welcomes your personal walkers, wheelchairs, and scooters. All events in the Museum are wheelchair accessible; however, not all doors in the Art of the Americas Wing are on power assist. Personal care attendants are admitted free of charge.

Assistive Listening Devices: An assistive listening system is available for gallery tours and talks from the Sharf Visitor Center and a separate system is available for programs in our auditoriums. Headsets and neckloops are available. For visitors with hearing aids with a T-coil switch, there are induction loops at all entrances, the box office, and the Information desk at the Sharf Visitor Center. For more information, call 617-267-9300, or e-mail

For a more detailed overview of the Museum of Fine Arts’ accessibility options, please see:

Deer Island:

Field Trip 3: Friday, August 4, 2017 (9:00am-11:30am)

Deer Island has 60 acres of open space, including a 2.6 mile paved handicapped accessible perimeter path.

No pets are allowed on facility tours except for service animals trained to perform a specific task for the benefit of a person with a disability.

The outdoor portion of the tour is 100% accessible, as are almost all of the indoor portions. The floor of the pump station is made of metal grating, which might be difficult for someone in a wheelchair.

For more information on Deer Island, please refer to:

Also, for a map of the island and tour route, please refer to:

Boston Public Library (Norman B. Leventhal Map Center):

Field Trip 4: Monday, August 7, 2017 (1:00pm-3:30pm)

Central Library: The Boston Public Library strives to make our resources accessible to all users through a variety of collections, services, and specialized equipment. The following collections, services, and equipment are available for use at the Central Library in Copley Square. Please note that the Central Library is currently under construction; call ahead before making a special trip if you have specific questions about these resources.

Accessible Entrances: The best entrance to the McKim Building at the Central Library in Copley Square is from the ramp on Darmouth Street. Elevators are available from the first floor to reach other floors in the building. The best entrance to the Johnson Building is from the temporary Exeter Street entrance, where an elevator provides access to the second floor. While it is possible to cross from one building to the other internally during the renovation, please note that a small set of stairs or a lift needs to be used. Any staff member or security guard can assist patrons needing assistance.

Services: To assist patrons when they visit, the Boston Public Library has several tools for public use. A wheelchair is available; please ask a security guard or check at an Information Desk if you need to use it during your stay. In addition, every public service desk has a handheld magnifier for use in the library. Several of our program rooms are equipped with assistive listening devices. Contact our Events department at 617.859.2212 or for information on this service. Patrons who need interpretation services for any of the library’s programs should request them as early as possible through our Programs department at (617) 859- 2382 or

For a more detailed overview of the Boston Public Library’s accessibility options, please see: