The USS Constellation Ship
and Constellation Center Museum are located on Pier 1, in the Fort McHenry
Shipyard, near the corner of Pratt Street and Holiday Street in Baltimore
Harbor, in Maryland.
Address: USS Constellation
Pier 1, 301 East Pratt Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21202.
Description and History:
The 176 foot, large sailing
ship, USS Constellation is the first ship of the US navy, built in 1797
as a frigate. It was one of six ships commissioned to protect American
shipping from "marauding freebooters," who were making American
shipping abroad an unsafe endeavor. It had a wooden hull, with three main
masts and 36 guns. It was designed with sharp bow lines, making it a speedier
ship, which earned it the nickname, "Yankee Race Horse."
It was rebuilt as a sloop
of war in 1853. Over the next 100 years, this ship fought against the
French, various gangs of Pirates, slave traders, and other unsavory Barbary
corsairs. It served in 5 major wars, from the Civil War through World
War 2. It was finally retired in 1955, and permanently docked in Baltimore.
Needless to say, many men
died a violent death aboard this ship, serving their country. Some died
at the hands of a fellow sailors. Both kinds of deaths have been known
to cause restless spirits.
The following ghosts are
most active around midnight, especially between December 25th and New
Year's Day. The smell of gunpowder proceeds the physical manifestations.
The first sightings of the
following ghosts started as soon as the USS Constellation was decommissioned
and permanently docked in Baltimore in 1955. The crew on the Navy submarine,
Pike, which was moored next to The USS Constellation, saw ghost lights,
heard strange noises, and even saw apparitions walking/floating around
the ship's decks.
1) Ghost of Neil Harvey
- sometimes seen on the orlop deck, below the main deck. In 1799, he
was court-martialed for cowardice. He had left his assigned station
at his gun in fear during a battle with the French, on February 5, 1799
where the 36 gun French frigate Insurgente was engaged and captured.
As a result as being convicted
of not only being a coward but also being a traitor, a Lieutenant Starrett
started off Harvey's punishment by sticking him with his sword. Wounded,
but still alive, Harvey was then executed in the traditional brutal
way, used by both the British and Americans in this era. He was tied
in front of a cannon and blown to bits, by order of Captain Thomas Truxtun
He appears as a shimmering
mass, because that is the way he sees himself after being blown up.
He wants to be forgiven for being a coward. He wasn't a traitor though
and wants to find a way to clear his name.
2) Captain Thomas Truxtun
- He was an experienced officer from the Revolutionary War, who was
the first commander of the USS Constellation from 1798-1801. He wrote
the book, concerning the drill manual and tactical methods, which became
a mainstay of Navy procedure. Under his gifted leadership, The USS Constellation
had many important victories.
He may be the officer often
seen in an old navy uniform who makes consistent appearances on the
forecastle deck. He still loves his ship.
Lieutenant Commander Allen
Ross Brougham, on board the Pike, took a picture of one entity of an
18th or 19th century officer that was described as having a "bluish
white radiancy," wearing an old fashioned uniform, with gold stripes
on his trouser, wearing a cocked hat and carrying a sword.
3) Carl Hansen - He was
the ship's 20th century watchman, until 1965. He adored the ship, and
had a strong emotional bond to the ship. In his younger days, he was
a Royal navy cook, making him an old sailor himself.
a) His ghost likes to play
cards, and will cheerfully give tours to unsuspecting people, such
as a priest who thought he was a real person.
b) At a Sea Scout Halloween
Party, he sat next to a young girl and smiled at her.
4) Spirit of a 11 year
old boy - The boy was the surgeon's assistant aboard the USS Constellation
in 1820-1822. He was murdered by two other sailors with a knife in the
cockpit of the orlop deck, according to Sybil Leek, a psychic with Hans
5) A sailor on one of the
vessels - He had become overwhelmed with the awful conditions on board,
and hung himself.
a) He is described as a sad
entity who likes to float around and across the gun and forecastle
b) Psychic Research:
Hans Holzer, famed parapsychologist, with the gifted psychic/medium.
Sybil Leek investigated The USS Constellation, and indeed found ghosts
aboard. The full investigation can be reviewed in Holzer's books:
1) Portal to the Past. 2) GHOSTS: True Encounters With the World Beyond.
The ghosts are keeping
an eye on their ship, The USS Constellation.
Some photos are from Constellation.org