In the opinion of many early-nineteenth-century seafaring men, the French had the most accomplished shipwrights in Europe. Thanks to Napoleon’s conquests, the French naval arsenals had access to vast tracts of wood they could source across the continent, and their ships were admired for their grace and speed. Even Britain’s mighty Royal Navy made it a habit of “taking the lines” from captured French vessels and incorporating them into new British warships.
|A model of Constitution possibly dating as early as the 1830s, but heavily restored in the 20th century. USS Constitution Museum collection.|
Speaking of models, if you are interested in miniature depictions of Constitution, or scores of other exquisite ships, be sure to visit the USS Constitution Model Shipwright Guild’s 34th annual ship model show beginning February 2. For more information, click here.