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Launched in 1854 from the Chesapeake Bay's Gosport Navy Yard at Portsmouth, Virginia, USS Constellation served her country for 100 years before her final decommissioning in 1955. Prior to the Civil War she sailed as flagship of the US African Squadron intercepting slave ships. During the Civil War she was charged with chasing confederate raiders, and she was a training ship for midshipmen at the US Naval Academy in Annapolis from 1871 to 1893. The ship was brought to Baltimore in 1955 for restoration. Today, the USS Constellation offers a wide range of activities and demonstrations which provide visitors with a first-hand experience of what life was like on a 19th century man-of-war.