1797 navy ship tours Boston harbor again People walk down the gang plank of the USS Constitution (AP photos)
1797 navy ship tours Boston harbor again
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Old Ironsides is about to enter a three-year restoration project.

Built in Boston and launched in October 1797, the USS Constitution or "Old Ironsides" is a ship that was commissioned by the U.S. Navy following the Revolutionary War. Its mission was to protect American merchant ships off the northern coast of Africa.

It earned the nickname "Old Ironsides" after winning numerous battles during the War of 1812 against Great Britain. Over the years, the ship has held a variety of roles in the Navy. Today with an all active-duty Navy crew, it is a major tourist destination in Boston. More than 500,000 visitors come aboard each year.

The Constitution is the world's oldest commissioned warship still afloat. During its restoration, its upper masts will be removed and the ship's long guns will be taken off. The three-mast frigate still will be open for public tours and officially enters dry dock in March 2015.

Workers are expected to re-copper the ship's hull, replace worn riggings and change out old planks on the gun and berth decks. General repairs will be made to the stern, bow and captain's cabin.

By spring or summer 2018 it should return to its familiar spot on Pier 1 at the Navy Yard.

Critical thinking challenge: How does the U.S. benefit by keeping such an old ship in its active fleet?

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COMMENTS (64)
  • benjif-2
    10/24/2014 - 10:20 a.m.

    This article is about a ship that fought in wars in the 17 and 1800's. This ship is called "Old Ironsides" because it has won some many battles in 1812 against Great Britain. The ship also has a lot of roles in the Navy today. Today more than 500,000 visitors have came to ride on the ship a year. This is the worlds oldest ship still afloat today. In March of 2015 there will be tours on this ship in the Boston Harbor.

  • JacobmH-2
    10/24/2014 - 10:20 a.m.

    A old boat called the USS Constitution and nicknamed Old Ironside for winning so many battles at the war of 1812. This year it will enter a 3 year restoration project. They are expected to change all the old planks on the gun deck and re-copper the hull. As well as to replace riggings that are damaged and Captains Cabin. This ship was made in October 1797. Its duty was to protect merchant ships off the coast of Africa. After winning several battles during the War of 1812 against Britain, the ship earned the nickname Old Ironside. Today it has a all active Navy crew and its a major tourist attraction in Boston. About 500,000 people come aboard each year. I think that this kind of ship is beautiful. Me and my Dad love to look at old sail boats. This one is amazing. And i really want to go see it when the restoration is complete. All in all, a very old boat named the USS Constitution which has earned the nicknamed "Old Ironsides" is going through a major restoration.

  • virginia1000
    10/24/2014 - 11:45 a.m.

    Facts: Built in Boston and launched in October 1797, the USS Constitution or "Old Ironsides" is a ship that was commissioned by the U.S. Navy following the Revolutionary War. Reasons: Its mission was to protect American merchant ships off the northern coast of Africa It earned the nickname "Old Ironsides" after winning numerous battles during the War of 1812 against Great Britain. Examples: Its mission was to protect American merchant ships off the northen coast of Africa. Details: By spring or summer 2018 it should return to its familiar spot on Pier 1 at the Navy Yard.

  • GD2000marine
    10/24/2014 - 01:03 p.m.

    The U.S. navy benefits by keeping such an old ship in it's active fleet by I think using the ship as an teaching tool for the naval Academy students.

  • ma2000dragonball
    10/24/2014 - 01:05 p.m.

    The U.S benefits from this because ET shows how much our navy fleet has progressed as a country and shows how much we'd tried all those years ago.

  • bailee27
    10/24/2014 - 01:34 p.m.

    Old Ironside, also known as a navy ship are in the Boston Harbor. If you want to see the ship it would probably be like going back in time. On October 1797 the USS Constitution or Old Ironside commissioned by the U.S. Navy filled the Revolutionary war. The worlds oldest commissioned war ship still afloat. This ship is like a piece of history.

  • PrestonF-Kuy
    10/24/2014 - 03:51 p.m.

    baybe the ship is so old because know won use it for a long time or some body sank it down to the deep ocean

  • Eric0221-YYCA
    10/24/2014 - 10:08 p.m.

    Wow, a 1797 ship during the war against the Great Britain, but now the ship is still here today in Boston, it should be in the world record book by being a oldest ship in Boston. The ship should be breaking apart all cause the planks on the deck should be rotting and the copper down the hull must be leaking a little bit of water letting the ship sink down n the ocean, so in Boston, the people are repairing the parts of the ship that are damaged after a long time until 2015. The people in Boston aboard the ship like 500,000 peoples every year in Boston, well that is too many people to board the ship, but people made it bigger so all 500,000 peoples should fit on board, the ship will be goods as new so it couldn't sink in the deep ocean. The people has been using the ship to tour Boston until 2018, that is 3 years that had been used everyday in Boston.
    Critical thinking challenge: How does the U.S. benefit by keeping such an old ship in its active fleet?
    Answer: The U.S. has been keeping an old ship in Boston for many years so it could be used again and again everyday in Boston.

  • Anders2828
    10/25/2014 - 07:31 p.m.

    The USS Constution deserves to be kept in the best condition possible. This ship helps to preserve our history, including some od our finest victories, such as the battle of 1812. The 500,000 tourists, which visit each year, make it possible to keep this amazing ship a float.

  • VAdriel-Cas
    10/25/2014 - 09:32 p.m.

    The U.S can benefit by keeping such an old ship active because there are many people like my self who have a deep interest in the 1700's and there are many more who are willing to fully support it.

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