Explore the Minuteman Bikeway | Heroes of 1975

February 21, 2024

photo of the lexington minuteman statue

The Minuteman Bikeway is one of Lexington’s proudest achievements, combining recreation with history. This year-round trail holds many memories of significant moments in America’s foundation. Discover all there is to offer on the Minuteman Commuter Bikeway.

Who were the Lexington Minutemen?

The term Minuteman means an individual who was part of the militia, who agreed to be ready for duty at a minute’s warning. Originally chartered in 1689, the Lexington Minutemen were known as the Second Military Company in Cambridge.

In 1773 and 1774, these Minutemen returned, fighting as Patriots to stop Great Britain’s tyranny over the colonies. At dawn on April 19, 1775, on the Lexington Common, the Minutemen prepared to fight the 700 British Regulars. Thus began the start of the American Revolution. 

Who are the Modern-Day Minutemen?

photo of the modern day lexington minutemen

Today, several individuals honor the Lexington Patriots who risked their lives for freedom. They dress as soldiers and tell the story of American Independence. They reenact special events like Patriots Day, Evacuation Day, Battle Road, and other life-changing battles for America’s freedom. Join these modern-day Patriots in April 2025 for the Lexington 250th Anniversary celebration.

The Minuteman Commuter Bikeway 

The 10.1-mile bikeway is a multi-use rail trail running from Bedford to the Cambridge Alewife Station. Its 12-foot wide, 2-way traffic paved route travels through Lexington and Arlington hitting special sites like the Battle of Lexington and Concord. 

On this trail, pedestrians, joggers, and bikers alike can follow the approximate route Paul Revere took on that fateful day in 1775. Called “America’s Revolutionary Rail Trail,” this bikeway is meant to honor the Minutemen and other individuals who fought for the American Revolution.  

Built by the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, the trail opened in 1993 on the inactive Lexington Branch of the Boston & Maine Railroad. Travelers can easily venture to subway and bus lines from this trail, helping to decline car traffic in the area. In 2008, the National Rails-to-Rails Conservancy inducted the bikeway into their Hall of Fame.

photo of the bikeway rail opening 1993

Things to Do Along the Bikeway

The Lexington side of the bike path offers many sites for those interested. You can pop by the Lexington Visitors Center and discover more about Lexington’s history. You’ll also find the Lexington Battle Green, where “the first blood was spilt in the dispute with Great Britain,” as George Washington wrote in his diary. This is also where the famous Minuteman statue is located. 

Enter the historic location of the Buckman Tavern which was a gathering place for locals and travelers for town meetings. The Old Burying Ground, located near the pathway, has graves of Revolutionary and Civil War soldiers. Treat yourself to a delicious meal at the many restaurants in Lexington Center. Sign up for a Battle Green Walking Tour or Liberty Ride Trolley Tour at the Visitors Center.

The Minuteman Commuter Bikeway is both a spot for recreation and exercise and a place where history reigns. With gorgeous scenery and a taste of a busy suburban town, you’ll find something new every time you visit. Explore the Minuteman Trail today and learn how Lexington continues to play a role in honoring the American Revolution.