On June 17, 1775, the rebels of the newly formed Continental Army and local militia fought the British on Breed's Hill in Boston. In an unfortunate mistake, the battle came to be known as the Battle of Bunker Hill, as it was the rebels' intent to fight on the latter hill, but intent does not count for much when it comes down to battle. While they put up a good fight, the local forces were unable to stop the British from taking the hill or terrorizing the nearby neighborhood of Charlestown. The neighborhood took many direct hits from cannons located on the British ships from whence the British troops had come. The resulting fires burned Charlestown to the ground.
At the time of the Battle of Bunker Hill, the British were besieged in Boston, so the area was beset with both major and minor skirmishes between the opposing forces. Therefore, rebuilding Charlestown was not immediately possible. After the siege, the town slowly returned to its pre-Bunker Hill state, but the major reconstruction waited until after the way.
Because Charlestown required such extensive rebuilding, it contains the most examples of post-war home construction in Boston. Additionally, the harbor became more active, and the Navy installed a shipyard at Moulton's Point. While this is no longer active, the Charleston Navy Shipyard is partially kept as a national park, which holds the USS Constitution.