Our travels to historic sites continued with visits to the USS Constitution (Old Ironsides) and the Bunker Hill Monument in Charlestown today. Great to get moving on an otherwise cold and gray day. We parked in a lot for the USS Constitution and enjoyed the walk along the harbor to the ship. The Boston skyline appears very close and very beautiful.
The USS Constitution is the oldest commissioned warship afloat in the world (according to our tour guide) and it is amazing to walk through. The sailor who gave our tour was wonderfully animated and engaging, and also shared a great deal of information about the ship and its battles. It was pretty cold today so it wasn’t as crowded as it will be in the summer http://www.history.navy.mil/ussconstitution/. They don’t charge admission but you are encouraged to make a donation.
We also learned the origin of the word scuttlebutt -noun 1. 1. Nautical. a. an open cask of drinking water. b. a drinking fountain for use by the crew of a vessel. 2. Informal. rumor or gossip. Origin: 1795–1805; 1900–05 Dictionary.com. I knew it meant gossip but did not know the origin. Well worth the visit and be sure to check out a short (ten minute) film about the Charlestown Navy Yard after you visit the ship and visit the visitor’s center. There is also a Museum that looks great that we didn’t have a chance to visit.
We continued on to the The Bunker Hill Monument – we could have walked but it was cold and enthusiasm was fading. Interest revived when we got there and got to make the tremendous climb up 294 (twisting and tight) steps to the top. Great views of the city and the USS Constitution (mostly the masts). There were only a few people at the top – a teacher and her students from California who were as out of breath as we were. http://www.cityofboston.gov/FreedomTrail/bunkerhill.asp A bit dizzying but we are none worse for the wear.
Time for a nice dinner and the Olympics.