by Patrick McSherry
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The Living History Crew of the OLYMPIA was involved a presentation on the history of the U.S. Navy aboard the Sloop of War CONSTELLATION on October 26-27, 2002.
On October 26 and 27, the Living History Crew of the OLYMPIA had the honor of being asked to be present aboard the Sloop of War CONSTELLATION in Baltimore’s Inner Harbor to take part in an event commemorating the history of the U.S. Navy.
The event was extremely interesting to the crew, as they were given
the opportunity of staying aboard the venerable wooden warship. The
first night aboard occurred on a very rainy night and the sound of the
heavy rain and water running off the canvas was loud enough to be heard
two decks below in the dry, but dark crew area. It seemed to be an added
touch our realism and the sound of the water drowned out the traffic
noise of the busy harbor area. The contrasts with our own OLYMPIA
were quite striking, with some odd similarities thrown in for good
Brian Miller, left, and jack "Pops" McSherry, right, help man the Spanish American War navy display on CONSTELLATION's gun deck.
The days were new experiences also. The crew manned three tables of
Spanish American War displays, joining other displays on the navy and
marines in World War One, and World War Two. The Ship’s Company provided
their own displays on the Civil War and War of 1812 eras navies as well
as nursing in the navy. The crew also had the experience of meals aboard
a ship in the days before the advent of the mess table. Breakfasts of
oatmeal with molasses, nuts and raisins, and lunches of corned beef,
pickles, figs, and other delicacies served on a mess cloth were enjoyed
One of the most unique aspects of the weekend was the chance to visit with historians of the other eras of naval history, compare notes, and learn new aspects of the navy’s history. The Ship’s Company was found to be a delightful and friendly group of people with which to work.
The Living History Crew of the OLYMPIA extends their thanks to the members of the Ships Company and the CONSTELLATION for their hospitality on this very memorable weekend.