BOSTON (WHDH) - The world’s oldest operating ship began another sailing season on Friday.

The USS Constitution, celebrating its’ 225th birthday this year, left the Charlestown Navy Yard and circled Boston Harbor, signaling the beginning of another year it will spend on the high seas.

The 304-foot vessel paused to conduct a 21-gun salute off the shore of Fort Independence, Castle Island.

“Old Ironsides” was first put into commision in 1797 and served as a crucial warship for the American cause in the War of 1812.

The Constitution provides free tours to the public Tuesday through Sunday, in an effort to preserve the Navy’s military history.

(Copyright (c) 2022 Sunbeam Television. The Associated Press contributed to this report. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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