Solid copper spike or rod (14-7/8" x 7/8" with 1-1/4" diameter head) made by Paul Revere for the USS Frigate Constitution ('Old Ironsides'), 1795-1797. Revere held the contact for supplying the copper bolts, rods, spikes, and other fittings, as well as the copper sheathing on the hull, for which he received $3,820.33. The 7/8" copper rods were primarily used below the ship’s water line to fasten ribs to keel and floor timbers to ribs.
This rare artifact was removed during one of the ship’s restoration projects prior to the mid-20th century. It was then displayed in a tavern near the Charlestown navy yard where the Constitution is berthed until a nautical antiques specialist purchased it and sold it to the present consignor, who has owned the item for nearly 40 years. The rod exhibits a stable surface of mottled green corrosion consistent with its age and origins. It is preserved in a custom Plexiglas display stand, sealed at both ends, with an identification plaque. In fine condition.
Terms and abbreviations used in our descriptions.