Read a preview of From Frigate to Sloop of War.
Read author Geoffrey Footner's response to this article.
An author of a 1991 report laying to rest, it claimed, the mystery of the Constellation's vintage fires back at the new book, From Frigate to Sloop of War, with evidence that includes Constructor John Lenthall's 1853 half-hull model, which matches the ship as she appears today in Baltimore's Inner Harbor.
Is the ex-USS Constellation displayed in Baltimore today a frigate, much modified but built in Baltimore in 1797, or is it a sloop-of-war, bearing the same name and built in Norfolk in 1853? The question had long vexed naval historians, and proponents of both theses waged a sometimes-bitter battle in print from 1948 until 1995.