Named for the colonial patriot, Revere experienced major changes in the ethnic background of its population in the late nineteenth century. As with many Massachusetts communities, the town sought ways to educate a growing immigrant population about the history of the commonwealth. In 1897–1899, Greenleaf and Cobb designed the new red brick Colonial Revival Town Hall and Library Building (281 Broadway) to achieve this goal. Schoolchildren were encouraged to contribute pennies for an art fund to purchase a bust of Paul Revere and the two paintings of his famous ride exhibited in the building. A stained glass window on the ceiling of the city council chambers depicts Longfellow's poem “The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere.” Medallions representing Paul Revere and the battles of Lexington, Concord, and Bunker Hill adorn the front of the building.
Near the city hall at 400 Broadway stands the Central Fire Station, a red brick Italian Renaissance–style building with prominent stone detailing and an ornate asymmetrical campanile constructed in 1912–1913. City records credit this design as the work of Penn Varney of Lynn. However, it is clearly a scaled-down copy of the fire station (see BR24) in Brookline constructed in 1907 and designed by Freeman, Funk and Wilcox.