This 1/78 scale plank-on-frame model of the USS Constitution was built by Michael Titone starting from a Model Shipways kit. Rigging is all functional.

In 1794, the United States Congress authorized the construction of six warships, which in effect created the American Navy. One of these ships was the USS Constitution, which became known as “Old Ironsides” because the oak used in her hull construction was so hard that enemy bullets were unable to penetrate the 7″-thick hull. 

The Constitution was built in Boston in 1797 and first served in the “Quasi War” with France from 1798 to 1800. She also served in the Mediterranean in the battle against pirates in Tripoli. In 1812, during the war against Britain, one of her most famous battles was the victory over the British HMS Guerriere. Another important victory was won with the defeat of the HMS Java later that year.

By 1831, the Constitution was considered unfit to sail, but public opinion of the famous ship allowed it to continue in active service until 1881. It has now been restored and is on display at the Naval Museum in Boston, MA. 

Exhibit added: November 10, 2011 - Last modified: April 19, 2023

Presented by The Joe Martin Foundation for Exceptional Craftsmanship