Construction of the vessel began in 1795 at Hartt Shipyard in Boston following the design of Joshua Humphrey from Philadelphia. The CONSTITUTION was launched in October 1797 and was completed in 1798. She was armed with 44 cannons, including 30 long-barrelled 24-pounders.
In the war between England and France (1812-1814) the CONSTITUTION led a successful engagement against the frigates GUERRIERE (with 38 cannons) and JAVA. Her last wartime voyage was in February 1815.
During the Thirty Years’ War King Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden ordered the building of a considerable number of large warships. They included the WASA which was already under construction and was originally to be called NY WASSAN. The total cost of building the vessel was approximately 100,000 imperial talers.
By July the 31st of 1628 all the cannons were on board and an the 10th of August of 1628 between 3 p.m. and 4 p.m. the WASA set sail on her maiden voyage. Once she was some way out to sea, she caught the wind in her sails. A few minutes later, a sudden squall forced the ship onto her side and first attempts to right her were unsuccessful. At the island of Beckholmen the WASA sank in 32 m of water. Salvage Operations began on l3th August 1628 and succeeded in bringing the WASA onto an even keel. However, it was not until 20th August 1959 that she was able to be raised for the first time by means of two pontoons. After 28 days a tug-boat towed the WASA 500 m to shallow water. By April 24th of 1961 all the preparations for raising the WASA out of the water had been completed.