The USS Constitution serves as the memory and educational voice of USS CONSTITUTION, by collecting, preserving and interpreting the stories of "Old Ironsides" and the people associated with her. We seek to create positive, memorable experiences for both children and adults through scholarship and innovation as we share CONSTITUTION''s contributions and stories with a global audience.
Programs: Adventurers of all ages are invited to set sail on a voyage of discovery at the USS Constitution Museum in a new permanent exhibit, All Hands on Deck: A Sailor’s Life in 1812. The exhibition features newly unearthed stories of the Ship’s crew from America’s “Second War for Independence.” It presents them in a dynamic, rich format that serves as a model for history museums to use in years to come. Visitors step into the roles of the actual sailors who served onboard “Old Ironsides” during the War of 1812 and experience the monotony, hardships, fear, and exhilaration of daily life in the confines of this isolated community. In a break from the traditional history museum format that relies primarily upon the display of artifacts and text, this thematic exhibit teaches through participation. Furl a sail in a gale force wind… Scrub the decks on hands and knees… Ready your cannon as the enemy bears down… Crawl into a hammock for a brief rest before another day dawns…. These are just a few of the experiences and some of the fun waiting for visitors in this highly interactive trip to our nation’s past.
A few weeks ago my Wife and I brought three of our Grandsons to the Freedom Trail. Like far too many locals, the boys had never been on it. By the time we reached your museum we were all a bit exhausted but I am so glad we took the time to go in!
I have never experienced a museum more welcoming than yours. From the terrific introductory film to the hammocks, we really gained a sense of what it was like to be an 1812 sailor and we left with a very real appreciation of Constitution's rich legacy.
I might add that your employees are the finest on the Freedom Trail. Our special thanks go to the staff who each took the time to share fascinating tales with us. After an afternoon of encountering tour guides and museum workers who ran the gamut from indifferent to downright surly it was a such a pleasure to meet three people who brought such genuine enthusiasm to their jobs!
So my thanks to all of you. You managed to keep two octogenarians and three teenage boys thoroughly engaged. No mean feat in either case!