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Ahoy! Old Ironsides, oldest warship afloat, tours harbor

October 20, 2017

The USS Constitution passes in front of the Boston skyline, Friday, Oct. 20, 2017, in Boston. The newly refurbished ship, nicknamed Old Ironsides, took its first spin since October 2014 to celebrate the 220th anniversary of the iconic vessel's maiden voyage. (AP Photo/Michael Dwyer)

BOSTON (AP) — The newly refurbished USS Constitution has taken its first spin in three years.

Friday’s joyride from Charlestown Navy Yard in Boston to Fort Independence on Castle Island celebrated the U.S. Navy’s 242nd birthday and the 220th anniversary of the iconic vessel’s maiden voyage.

The world’s oldest commissioned warship afloat fired a 21-gun salute in the waters off the fort. Its cannons boomed another 17 times as it passed the U.S. Coast Guard station, the former site of the shipyard where the Constitution was built and launched in 1797.

It is the warship’s first time underway since October 2014.

The ship earned the nickname Old Ironsides during the War of 1812 with Britain.

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