USS Constitution Museum
Charlestown Navy Yard, Charlestown, MA, USA
www.ussconstitutionmuseum.org - (617) 426-1812
USS Constitution Museum Charlestown Reviews
Sailing the seas for 200 Years May 21, 2012
One of the many stops on the Freedom Trail, the USS Constitution and immediate area provide enough entertainment for a stand-alone visit. I spent a morning checking out the USS Constitution Museum, touring “Old Ironsides” herself, and enjoying a snack on the waterfront as I took some really nice pictures of the Boston skyline. The Charlestown Navy Yard also includes the USS Cassin Young, a Fletcher-class destroyer from World War II.
The Museum houses the largest collection of Constitution-related objects in a single location. The collection focuses on the Ship’s origins, her role in the early republic, her continuing story, and on those who have shaped her history to the present day. I love history and found the museum to be a nice balance to the ship tour. Most of the “fun stuff” was geared toward a younger audience, making this a good stop for kids.
The Museum has a suggested donation of $5 for Adults, $3 for Seniors, and $2 for Children. Group reservations (10 or more) can be made via an online form.
A large part of a visit to the museum is a tour of the Constitution itself. Tours are free and given by several active duty Sailors. The top deck (spar deck), gun deck, and berth deck are included along with information on the history of the ship, its crew, and why we still have the ship here today. Each tour lasts about 30 minutes and begins every half-hour from 10:00AM until 30 minutes before close. I had a great time walking the decks, and our guides were all friendly and knowledgeable. I couldn’t imagine how it would be possible to do anything quickly on the ship with its low ceilings, steep steps and small doorways. Yet hundreds of men and boys did it for years – guess you can get used to just about anything with enough practice and training!
If you’re in the area around sunset, you may hear the ship’s saluting battery for evening colors. On July 4th, she actually sets sail for the annual turnaround. To get on the cruise requires winning a lottery (details online) so you’ll probably have to settle for a picture or video of the big day.
Please note that the ship is a separate entity from the Museum run by the US Navy.
Apr-Oct: Tues-Sun 10AM-6PM. Nov-Mar: Thurs-Sun 10AM-4PM. Check the website if you plan to visit on a holiday. It’s open for some but not all federal holidays.
As the ship is a commissioned warship, it’s not fully handicapped-accessible so guests requiring additional assistance are asked to contact the Events Dept (firstname.lastname@example.org) prior to their arrival. Adults may need to present a valid state or federal photo id to take the tour and bags may be subject to search – the USS Constitution is still a military vessel after all.
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