USS Constitution Museum

USS Constitution Museum The Museum preserves and shares the stories of "Old Ironsides" and those who shaped her history with exhibits and programs for all ages. The USS Constitution Museum preserves and shares the stories of "Old Ironsides" and those who shaped her history with exhibits and programs for all ages.
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The USS Constitution Museum and the USS Constitution (the Ship) are operated by different organizations. See the Ship's website (http://www.navy.mil/local/constitution/) for the most up-to-date information about the Ship's public visitation hours.

Operating as usual

Tickets are available for this weekend! Book your spot at usscm.org/tickets!
09/26/2020

Tickets are available for this weekend! Book your spot at usscm.org/tickets!

Congratulations to Museum Trustee, CAPT Mary Jo Majors, NC, USN (Ret.)!
09/25/2020

Congratulations to Museum Trustee, CAPT Mary Jo Majors, NC, USN (Ret.)!

This year the NNCA Awards Committee received 16 nominations for awards. Six selectees were chosen from this rich field of nominations and will be presented over six days. Congratulations to our 2020 NNCA Awardees!

2020 NNCA Service Award
Mary Jo Majors

This year’s selectee, Mary Jo Majors, volunteered to serve as the NNCA Merchandise Chair in 2015. Her initial goals were to reduce the stored inventory and build the Lands' End Store Front to provide online and catalog access for NNCA logo items. Her inventory reduction initiatives resulted in a 60 per cent decrease in asset value. She also led the committee that developed the NNCA 30th Anniversary Coin which sold out at its debut at the 2017 Annual Meeting.

She is a very active volunteer in the local Navy community and frequently serves as the guest speaker at the Officer Development School (ODS) graduations. Close ties with the ODS staff has facilitated the distribution of the In and Out Harms Way books to all active and reserve Nurse Corps accessions. She serves as the Navy Nurse Corps Advisor to the Boston NROTC Consortium and the Navy Recruiting District (NRD) New England Senior nurse advisor/interviewer for officer program recruiters. In addition she mentors female crew members aboard the USS CONSTITUTION and has commissioned many Nurse Corps officers aboard the ship.

Her compassion for volunteerism is limitless as demonstrated by the numerous additional civilian, military and veteran organizations she supports.

#NNCA #NavyNurse

Firing the cannons was not an easy task; it took teamwork and patience. Lead your team to victory in this target practic...
09/25/2020

Firing the cannons was not an easy task; it took teamwork and patience. Lead your team to victory in this target practice game from the Museum’s A Sailor’s Life for Me online game. bit.ly/3cxpqzZ

09/24/2020
Historian At Home with USS Constitution Museum's Carl Herzog: Battle Tactics

In this week's episode of Historian at Home, Carl Herzog uses logbook entries and homemade miniature ship models to recreate USS Constitution's tactical prowess and skillful ship handling in the battle with HMS Cyane and HMS Levant: bit.ly/3mPIy0U

The USS Constitution Museum presents a video series with Public Historian Carl Herzog. Carl uses the Museum's collections, archives, and online content to ex...

09/23/2020
A Sailor's Life, Live!

Do you have a good luck charm? Sailors have their superstitions too! In this episode, find out what brought them good luck and bad luck at sea.

When the hulls of sailing warships intentionally or accidentally crashed together in early 19th century battles, some of...
09/23/2020
1797 Pattern Boarding Pike - USS Constitution Museum

When the hulls of sailing warships intentionally or accidentally crashed together in early 19th century battles, some of the men listed as “boarders” on the quarter bill, armed with boarding pikes, attempted to force their way onto the enemy’s decks. Pikes were also used defensively to repel enemy boarders. This 1797 pattern boarding pike was most likely the standard U.S. Navy issue during the War of 1812 More at bit.ly/33Mimvt

When the hulls of sailing warships intentionally or accidentally crashed together in early 19th century battles, some of the men listed as “boarders” on the quarter bill, armed with boarding pikes, attempted to force their way onto the enemy’s decks. Alternately, pikes were also used defensive...

Register for tomorrow's episode of A Sailor's Life, Live! to learn about sailor symbols and superstitions aboard USS Con...
09/22/2020

Register for tomorrow's episode of A Sailor's Life, Live! to learn about sailor symbols and superstitions aboard USS Constitution and beyond. bit.ly/32yIxX1

In 1815, before news of the war's end had reached USS Constitution at sea, Captain Charles Stewart and his crew spied tw...
09/22/2020
Constitution’s Last Fight - USS Constitution Museum

In 1815, before news of the war's end had reached USS Constitution at sea, Captain Charles Stewart and his crew spied two enemy ships off the coast of Portugal. Constitution made chase, engaged the ships, and a battle commenced. Learn how "Old Ironsides" defeated both ships on our blog: bit.ly/3kn1hii

On February 17, 1815, President James Madison signed the Treaty of Ghent, officially putting an end to the War of 1812. But for Constitution, at. . .

Able seamen were elite members of 19th century enlisted naval crews. They were relied on for the smooth operation of the...
09/21/2020

Able seamen were elite members of 19th century enlisted naval crews. They were relied on for the smooth operation of the ship and sail handling, and had to know how to fight as part of a gun crew or with small arms. Many skilled able seamen went on to become petty and warrant officers. Read the short biographies of USS Constitution's War of 1812 able seamen on our website at bit.ly/3hKMX1o [Image: Stephen Biesty]

Did you know our online game -- A Sailor's Life For Me! -- has lesson plans, educational activities, and suggestions on ...
09/20/2020
Home - A Sailors Life For Me!

Did you know our online game -- A Sailor's Life For Me! -- has lesson plans, educational activities, and suggestions on incorporating primary sources into your curriculum? There are even mini games to play for a quick brain break. Visit aslfm.org to explore these resources for classroom integration!

09/19/2020
A Very Quick Tour of the USS Constitution Museum

Our staff is here to greet you! We’re here to bring USS Constitution’s history to life with many opportunities for learning and engagement in a safe and clean environment. Book your tickets online at usscm.org/tickets.

Today, on National POW/MIA Recognition Day, we join a grateful nation in honoring the sacrifice and memory of those serv...
09/18/2020

Today, on National POW/MIA Recognition Day, we join a grateful nation in honoring the sacrifice and memory of those service members in captivity and those who have not returned home.

#POWMIARecognitionDay #POWMIADay

09/18/2020
Constitution Challenge Board Game

Navigate the challenges and chances of serving aboard "Old Ironsides" in this family-friendly board game. Watch step-by-step directions and then download your own game board and cards at bit.ly/33wD95O

Do you have a good luck charm? Sailors have their superstitions too! Join Museum staff and USS Constitution crew for the...
09/17/2020
Welcome! You are invited to join a webinar: A Sailor's Life, Live! Symbols & Myths. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email about joining the webinar.

Do you have a good luck charm? Sailors have their superstitions too! Join Museum staff and USS Constitution crew for the next episode of A Sailor's Life, Live! to find out what brought good and bad luck at sea. Register now: bit.ly/32yIxX1

Do you have a good luck charm? Sailors have their superstitions too! Join us for this episode to dive into sailor myths and symbols.

Rachel (Budd) Bradford was among the crowd of onlookers gathered to watch USS Constitution launch into Boston Harbor in ...
09/17/2020
Letter from Rachel Bradford to Elias Boudinot, September 26, 1797 - USS Constitution Museum

Rachel (Budd) Bradford was among the crowd of onlookers gathered to watch USS Constitution launch into Boston Harbor in September 1797. She recounted the events in a letter to Elias Boudinot, a lawyer in Pennsylvania, writing that Naval Constructor George Claghorn “actually appeared to have lost flesh in eight and forty hours, from mortification and vexation” when the Ship failed to launch. Constitution at last floated into the harbor a month later. Read the full letter on our website: bit.ly/2Rn3yh1

The construction of USS Constitution, one of the United States Navy’s original six frigates, was completed at Edmund Hartt’s shipyard in Boston’s North End under the direction of Naval Constructor George Claghorn. On September 20, 1797, Claghorn prepared to launch the heavy ship from dry land ...

Today is #AskACurator Day! What questions do you have for our Curatorial Crew? Comment or message us! USSCM Public Histo...
09/16/2020

Today is #AskACurator Day! What questions do you have for our Curatorial Crew? Comment or message us! USSCM Public Historian, Carl, and Manager of Curatorial Affairs, Kate, will be answering your questions throughout the day.

On September 20, 1797, Naval Constructor George Claghorn prepared to launch the newly built USS Constitution into Boston...
09/15/2020
Should Her Ways Have Better Laid - USS Constitution Museum

On September 20, 1797, Naval Constructor George Claghorn prepared to launch the newly built USS Constitution into Boston Harbor. As crowds of Bostonians and dignitaries gathered in the shipyard, the heavy frigate inched forward, became stuck on the launching ways, and refused to budge. A second attempt made September 22 also failed, much to Claghorn’s chagrin. It wasn't until the third attempt that the ship successfully launched. Learn more about what it took to finally launch the Ship on our blog: bit.ly/32ixoJN

George Claghorn had a problem. For three years the naval constructor, charged with overseeing the building of one of the United States’ new frigates, had. . .

Despite USS Constitution's storied strength and valor, the Ship has seen its share of humbling failures and close calls ...
09/14/2020
Constitution's Close Calls - USS Constitution Museum

Despite USS Constitution's storied strength and valor, the Ship has seen its share of humbling failures and close calls over the years. In this blog post, learn about the groundings and near misses that came close to ending Constitution's career, and the skilled captains and sailors who saw the ship through. bit.ly/3bNIEAQ

In the age before accurate charts marking depths and hazards to navigation, sailing a ship along an unfamiliar coast could be a dangerous business. Imprecise. . .

09/13/2020
Protecting Global Commerce: From USS Constitution to the South China Sea, August 26, 2020

We recently hosted experts from the The Fletcher School at Tufts University, Suffolk University, and the Naval War College to explore the U.S. Navy's legacy of protecting maritime commerce from USS Constitution to today. You can view the program in its entirety at bit.ly/3jYCHUL

The USS Constitution Museum brought its Public Historian and three experts together for a virtual discussion on USS Constitution‘s history of protecting mari...

Back-to-school mornings are here, so grab an "Old Ironsides" mug for your favorite caffeinated beverage! Shop this item ...
09/12/2020

Back-to-school mornings are here, so grab an "Old Ironsides" mug for your favorite caffeinated beverage! Shop this item and more in our Museum Store online or in-person. store.ussconstitutionmuseum.org/

09/11/2020
Scrimshaw Craft

Have some extra time on your hands? Scrimshaw was a popular leisure time activity for whalers and sailors in the 19th century. Follow along with Manager of Interpretation & Visitor Services, Jennifer Zanolli, as she creates an animal friendly version using soap.

We were honored to participate in American Humane's reunification of Military Working Dog Ramos with Marine Corps Vetera...
09/11/2020

We were honored to participate in American Humane's reunification of Military Working Dog Ramos with Marine Corps Veteran Cabey today at Boston National Historical Park's #CharlestownNavyYard!

Today USS Constitution commemorates #September11 with a virtual program on Facebook Live starting at 8:30 a.m. As part o...
09/11/2020

Today USS Constitution commemorates #September11 with a virtual program on Facebook Live starting at 8:30 a.m. As part of the commemoration, they will fire their saluting battery at the following times: 8:46 a.m. - 9:03 a.m. - 9:37 a.m. - 10:03 a.m. #NeverForget [Photo courtesy of U.S. Navy]

Easily transportable from ship to shore and back again, portable writing desks like this one allowed officers to pen cor...
09/10/2020
Silas Talbot's Writing Desk - USS Constitution Museum

Easily transportable from ship to shore and back again, portable writing desks like this one allowed officers to pen correspondence to colleagues and personal letters to family at home. When opened, the desk includes storage space for papers and compartments for an inkwell, wafers (for sealing letters), sand (to help dry wet ink), and other writing implements. This desk belonged to Silas Talbot. bit.ly/2QPFGlI

09/09/2020

Join us for an episode of A Sailor's Life, Live! all about Ship Design!

USS Constitution Museum's cover photo
09/09/2020

USS Constitution Museum's cover photo

How was USS Constitution designed to outrun and outgun the competition? Find out on the next episode of A Sailor's Life,...
09/08/2020

How was USS Constitution designed to outrun and outgun the competition? Find out on the next episode of A Sailor's Life, Live!: bit.ly/2D7fvE0

Not all sailors in the 19th century were literate, but for those who could read (mostly commissioned and warrant officer...
09/08/2020
Reading at Sea - USS Constitution Museum

Not all sailors in the 19th century were literate, but for those who could read (mostly commissioned and warrant officers) books were a pleasant way to pass the time. Learn more about literacy and reading at sea on our blog! bit.ly/3bk4qMr

Happy #LaborDay! [Photo Credit: Greg M. Cooper Photography]
09/07/2020

Happy #LaborDay! [Photo Credit: Greg M. Cooper Photography]

"The only things that keep this little wooden world together are hard work and discipline,” said Captain Jack Aubrey. Wa...
09/06/2020
Maritime Movie Club: Master & Commander

"The only things that keep this little wooden world together are hard work and discipline,” said Captain Jack Aubrey. Watch the hierarchy and regulations aboard HMS Surprise break down in the Museum’s Maritime Movie Club discussion of Master & Commander: The Far Side of the World. bit.ly/2YWyRDr

Watch experts from the USS Constitution Museum share relevant historical information, movie trivia, and favorite clips from the cult classic Master & Command...

We are thrilled to see visitors back at the Museum! Click usscm.org/tickets to reserve your spot. We are open this Satur...
09/05/2020

We are thrilled to see visitors back at the Museum! Click usscm.org/tickets to reserve your spot. We are open this Saturday and Sunday, but closed on Labor Day - Monday, September 7.

Quickly follow your captain's orders in this fun nautical version of Simon Says! bit.ly/34Aewrf
09/04/2020
ussconstitutionmuseum.org

Quickly follow your captain's orders in this fun nautical version of Simon Says! bit.ly/34Aewrf

09/03/2020
Historian At Home with USS Constitution Museum's Carl Herzog: Music

Music was an important element of life aboard U.S. Navy ships in the Age of Sail, but USS Constitution's connections to music and musical instruments extend well beyond the fife and drum. In this episode of Historian at Home, Carl Herzog explores the many ways music is a part of the Ship's history. bit.ly/3bnwChs

The USS Constitution Museum presents a video series with Public Historian Carl Herzog. Carl uses the Museum's collections, archives, and online content to ex...

In addition to the navy's printed Rules and Regulations, a ship's commanding officer typically enacted his own regulatio...
09/02/2020

In addition to the navy's printed Rules and Regulations, a ship's commanding officer typically enacted his own regulations, which were then enforced by his lieutenants. First Lieutenant Ellie Vallette, who served aboard USS Constitution from 1824-1828, kept a logbook that included rules and regulations, watch and quarter bills, and muster rolls. The regulations, which differed from ship to ship, provide an immersive look at the day-to-day operations and expectations of the crew.

Address

22 1st Ave.
Boston, MA
02129

10 minute walk from North Station On the MBTA Water Shuttle and Bus Route #93 Near Sullivan Square station

Opening Hours

Thursday 10:00 - 17:00
Friday 10:00 - 17:00
Saturday 10:00 - 17:00
Sunday 10:00 - 17:00

Telephone

(617) 426-1812

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Our Story

At the USS Constitution Museum we are dedicated to engaging all ages in the story of “Old Ironsides” to spark excitement about maritime heritage, naval service, and the American experience. We ensure that the stories of USS Constitution and those who shaped her history are never forgotten, always remain relevant, and inspire as many people as possible. We provide an environment where inter-generational groups seeking an enjoyable and educational experience can have fun while learning and exploring history together. Located in the historic Charlestown Navy Yard, the USS Constitution Museum is a proud partner the National Parks of Boston, Naval History & Heritage Command, and USS Constitution.

For more information, visit us at usscm.org.

Nearby museums


Comments

USS Constitution at 1:1250 sscale Heinz-Peter Weiss (Germany) makes limited edition miniature paper models of historic ship at the scale of 1:250 ( See also Society of Miniature Ship Collectorshttp://smsc-home.org/index.html )
USS Constitution at 1:1250 sscale Heinz-Peter Weiss (Germany) makes limited edition miniature paper models of historic ship at the scale of 1:250 ( See also Society of Miniature Ship Collectorshttp://smsc-home.org/index.html )
Great program. Hope I can find it to show mt grandboys later.
USS CONSTITUTION Sonnet JULY 4 I never claimed a noble birth nor spoke Of those who dressed in suits with velvet bands, But learned the ways of copper, pine and oak And iron forged by master craftsman's hands. This ship is built in keeping with the past, Is hailed in celebration of the day, Is sailed, crew ready 'fore the mast. GOD speed---His grace bestowed along the way. Events occurred. They're writ in history. They tell of men who lived and died each year In wars fought to defend our liberty. Full measure given. Ay. The cost was dear. The questions circled 'round and 'round for men Would hesitate to let this frigate die. You know her story. Think on it, and then Teach others so they'll know the reasons why. KEEP HER FIT. FLY HER FLAG ON HIGH. UNFURL HER CANVAS. LET HER CANNONS ROAR. A ship will live when people now her worth. And so she lives because of noble birth.
First Memorial Day USS CONSTITUTION SONNET 1868 If you would close your eyes and breathe in deep, If you would pause and let your mind be free, Let not Hypnos's poppies trick you to sleep, Let visions ebb and flow...then you will see The ones thought lost to you have not gone far, The ones who lived and loved in every way Are part of the great cosmos like the stars, Are still as dear and near to you every day. And Heaven holds the ones you did not know, And heaven blessed because they paid the price. Be of good cheer, your memories keep the glow Between your place on earth and Paradise. A ship will live when people know her worth. And so she lives because of noble birth.
I really enjoy this site. Good info and articles. I grew up in Cambridge and my father was a rigger at the Navy Yard - he worked on the Constitution during her refits at the Yard. Great ship - been aboard many times - now live in SC so don't get there often now - but your site keeps me in contact. Thanks.
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There is no where else I would rather be than Boston in the month of April. We who were born here and have lived here all our lives know what I am talking about. Today is BOSTON ONE DAY, in memory of the loss and injury incurred by innocent by-standers at the Boston Marathon 7 years ago. On Saturday, the 18th, I would have been at the Old North Church at the lantern lighting ceremony. I even make it to Lexington once in a while. There is an incredible and unbreakable bond between the ship and the church and so I submit the following poems in honor of the heroes of the day, the patriots of 1775. USS CONSTITUTION. SONNET 1775 What is it about Boston that rattles the British so? The sister colonies look toward the New World hub as it battles Red Coat muskets in hostilities that started that fateful night in April. No hiding behind Indian faces when the riders spread their warning that will send militia fighters to their places-- two lanterns in Old North, the golden lights that will illuminate the way to more than they could ever imagine. The night air warms the spirit as never before. With thoughts unspoken life is kept intact. Un-loosened words give men the strength to act. USS CONSTITUTION SONNET 1775 Ungrateful rabble! How dare you reject All that being British has to offer. Have you nerve to fight? Think you can protect city, field and farm 'gainst those who'd die for royal heads? Swords and muskets, troops in red coats off to Lexington, then Concord's river, march some twenty miles in step with high notes of fife and drum. Who'll stand and deliver? There! Across the lawn in their work-day clothes, also ready to die---for a brother. New World men bravely lined up in rows muskets poised , arm in arm with each other. Defiant to the death this April morn A new breed of American is born.
Best wishes on the 44th birthday of the Museum. Look forward to many more.
Favorite Moment: Being able to join Constitution on a July 4th turn around about ten(10) years ago
I was wondering if you have any pieces of "Old Ironsides" from the original when it was brought in to be restored? If so, than fantastic, if not, my grandfather was part of the restoration and he was given a piece from the original who gave it to my Daddy, who left it to me when he passed this past Dec. Which I have it secured. Please let me know if you would like pictures of it.
For my Annapolis and 3/6 boys. Come and see me where it all started.