But USS Constitution, commanded by Isaac Hull, brought welcome news of the first victory - and notable it was! - to the beleaguered citizens desperate for some good news! It was during that monumental engagement when the stout sides of Constitution repelled the iron shot of the British ship and caused one American sailor to cry out, "The cannonballs bounce off her sides! They must be of iron!" And the nickname was born.
|Constitution mid-battle with Guerriere|
In commemoration of that famous battle, Constitution's first single ship engagement, the US Navy, still the owner of the ship, ordered her underway on her own power - sail, she has no mechanical propulsion - on 19 August 2012. It was a wonderful sight, though with precious little wind to fill her sails. Nonetheless, she was free floating, unattached from her ubiquitous tug, with some of her sails set. Here's an image I took that day!
As you can easily see, there wasn't much breeze, unlike the previous time she sailed, on the 200th anniversary of her launch. A still marvelous experience to witness. Congratulations, Old Ironsides!
Until next time,