USS Constitution set sail, commemorates War of 1812
BOSTON (WHDH) -- A short sail - centuries in the making. The U.S.S. Constitution sailed under her own power on Sunday in a journey to celebrate her victory in the War of 1812.
“It gives you goosebumps just looking at it," said Jane Redfern.
Greg Hebard said, “It’s magnificent.”
“It’s history in the making. It’s being part of it,” said Celeste Wright.
On August 19th 1812, the U.S.S. Constitution defeated an English warship and earned itself a nickname during the battle.
‘Old Ironsides’ still has people in awe 200 years later. This time, those looking on are the thousands who showed to Castle Island to see her in all her beauty.
A few sails were unfurled, and for a few minutes she glided along, similar to how she would have looked during the War of 1812 - an impressive and rare feat for the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world.
“Still sailing 200 years later. Imagine,” said one spectator.
Technically speaking, this isn't a 'once in a lifetime experience', but it's close. It's only the second time the Constitution has sailed using its own power in the last 100 years. The last time was in 1997 and before that 1881.
“It’s was pretty cool that is sailed for many years without a tugboat,” said one boy.
For many parents, this was more than just a cool sight. It was a lesson.
“It's history, basically,” said Michelina Casagrande.
“The kids just love the history, they love the area, nothing better than living in ma and getting to see this,” said Rob Casagrande.
Some even got an up-close look.
“The harbor is packed with little boats, everyone is coming here to see it,” said an onlooker.
Maybe no-one had a better seat than Maureen Peters' son. Chris Peters was on board, helping navigate.
“He was so excited. He's had 3 deployments in Persian Gulf, off Africa, but this is the coolest, he's been Suez Canal, but this is way cool,” said Maureen Peters.
After a rousing 21-gun salute, 'Old Ironsides' was tugged back to Charlestown.
The ship with a sterling record, again, returned home after another successful sail.