Gary Waldeck visited Old Ironsides today, its last day in drydock after 26 months of repairs.
Schedule of refloating activities.
Thanks for posting the link to the schedule!
Would it not make sense to keep it drydock permanently?
Unless we're seriously planning for this combat situation, keeping an antique afloat in the ocean at taxpayer expense is not good.
You'll note she's still not fully put together. Heard a talk today that they do that to keep the pressure off the keel. Once they refloat it they can add things like the spars and bowsprit and topmasts and I'm guessing the cannons.
Plus, it's still a commissioned warship. I get that she's not taking on the Chinese navy any day soon, but it's kind of cool. And the idea of a commissioned warship that doesn't float probably won't float in the Navy.
Go to Nova Scotia. If you tour Lunenburg, ask your tour guide (or other tourism or even local type) what really happened to the original Bluenose.
Most will change the subject or avoid the question - or pretend that the replica is the original.
...either broke up on a reef or something or fell to the ship breakers, salvagers that would strip them of fittings then sell the timbers for building framing. If you're ever in an old house and get a chance to get into the basement (or an unfinished attic), especially near the seacoast, look for odd cuts in the wood and peg holes that don't belong there. You just found yourself part of a ship.
It's sad what happened to the old schooners, but most of them were converted to coal, timber or cement barges, especially in the Boston-Rockland or Portland trade.
Hey, take a good hard look at the stern of this old barge...
Clue...in the background is the Bunker Hill Monument...
I finally got someone to tell me (not even my Grandfather would tell me - and this was before the internet, pretty much).
The original Bluenose, despite having sufficient stature as to appear on the Canadian dime and a postage stamp, despite being an official symbol of Nova Scotia, was shorn of her masts and sent to the Caribbean with a retrofit engine. She broke up on a reef in the 1940s.
But the shame of having let this happen still lingers.
(as for the picture above, that is the Constitution during the "receiving/museum ship" phase of her life - she was never used as a barge or a coal hauler. She was used as a training ship before this.)
...I thought the correct answer was, "Very expensive waterfront condos in Charlestown!"
Go to NYC and visit the the Intrepid museum. It's funded and maintained privately and not by taxpayers, which is much more sensible than the federal government running a local tourist attraction under the pretense of defending the border.
How much of the ship is original anyways? Over time it's had a lot of stuff replaced. The guys on Car Talk debated at length the question of when a restored car is no longer has the "identity" of the original after you replace the engine, body panels, and all the other parts that wear out. I think that their consensus was that it stops being the original car after you replace the ceiling liner.
It's called the Tea Party Museum.
You do realize the pride that the US Navy has in the fact that this ship is still around, right? And that the USS Constitution is not used for "border defense"?
To do what you suggest, the ship would need to be decommissioned and either donated to a group or other government entity. If it was not the National Park where the Constitution resides, it would also need to have a berthing area.
The ship is between 15 and 20% original, mostly in the keel. Considering it is from 1797, that is fairly impressive.
She is the only ship in the US Navy to have sunk an enemy, she is also the oldest commissioned ship in the world.
Also, that dry dock needs to be available for the other historic ship in the Navy Yard, the USS Cassin Young, when it needs to go into Dry Dock.
The work was supposed to go until March 2018, so it didn't cost as much as your brain is making it.
Nope. No good. She belongs in the water. The wood swells and tightens up. If a wooden ship (or any wooden boat) is out of the water too long, the wood will dry and shrink. The types of oak they use are resistant to absorbing water, but they are not water proof.
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