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19th Century
Portsmouth Naval Shipyard has built its maritime reputation by providing this Nation with reliable warships. Specific 19th century events include:
1800 - Shipyard established June 12, 1800Commodore Issac Hull
1812 - War of 1812. Commodore Isaac Hull, (shown right), first naval officer to command Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.
1814 - Launching of USS Washington, first ship built at the Shipyard.
1820 - Authorization was received for the construction of a barracks in 1820 on the site of the present Administration Building (Building 86).
1822- A bridge was completed which connected Portsmouth and Kittery. Prior to this, workmen had to ride the ferry to work, or "boat pool," with three or more people rowing a small boat across the river to the Shipyard.
1827 - In the spring of 1827, the U.S. Marines started to build their present barracks at the" extreme northeast point of the island" in a field noted for its snakes.
1834 - The first hospital was established in 1834 in an old building built in 1802, which had been occupied by the Lieutenant of the Shipyard. It was fitted up at small expense as a temporary hospital for the station and could accommodate 10 patients.
1840 - Winter regulations were established, and stated in 1840, "that when the mercury is down to 5 above zero, a black ball is to be hoisted at the flagpole to let the mechanics and laborers know they will not be mustered that day." This provision was later modified to include extremely hot weather and gales. This custom continued until after the turn of the century.

- Steamer Saranac built. First steam powered vessel constructed at the Shipyard.Franklin Shiphouse
1854 - One of the largest shiphouses in the United States, the Franklin Shiphouse (shown right) derived its name from the fact that the USS Franklin was built within it during the decade from 1854 to 1864. As originally built, the shiphouse was 240 feet long, 131 feet wide and 72 feet from floor to ridge. Its roof was covered with 130 tons of slate.
1855 - Overhauled USS Constitution,USS Constitution "Old Ironsides" (shown right)
1870 - Admiral David G. Farragut died at the Shipyard.
1884 - Survivors of the Greely Artic Expedition brought to the Shipyard.
1898 - Captured Spanish Prisoners are encamped on the Shipyard.