Cruise ship enlivens Cambridge Creek

Dorchester Banner/Dave Cannon Residents of Cambridge were greeted Friday by the sight of the “American Constitution,” a new cruise ship visiting the city. The vessel docked at Long Wharf, giving its passengers a chance to enjoy the shopping and historical attractions of Cambridge.

Dorchester Banner/Dave Cannon
Residents of Cambridge were greeted Friday by the sight of the “American Constitution,” a new cruise ship visiting the city. The vessel docked at Long Wharf, giving its passengers a chance to enjoy the shopping and historical attractions of Cambridge.

CAMBRIDGE — “Hey, what’s that?” was heard along the streets and waterfront of this Choptank River town on Friday, and for good reason. The “American Constitution” had come to visit, and it was quite a sight.

The small – compared to others, but seems pretty big otherwise – cruise ship was docked at Long Wharf for one of its first trips. In April, the ship just recently went into service with American Cruises, taking passengers on 10-day trips around the Chesapeake Bay.

The vessel is owned by American Cruise Lines, and passed its sea trials early last month. It has six decks and can carry about 175 passengers in 89 cabins. She has a crew of 43.

It has a solid Eastern Shore connection, having been built in Salisbury by Chesapeake Shipbuilding, at a cost of $30 million. The ship has a length of 269 feet, and width of 56 feet. She can reach 12 knots, or 14 mph, and is specially designed for travel on rivers and inland waterways.

This spring, the “American Constitution” is based in Baltimore. In the summer and fall, it will also sail from Boston and New York.
The ship attracted not only attention, but also favorable comment, and hopes for the future of the city’s port.

“Cambridge used to be the only other port for larger ships other than Baltimore,” Donald Webster said in a post on social media. “We need to take advantage once again. Looks great!”

Charlie Tinley responded with one of the town’s slogans, saying, “Water moves us.”

The visitors might also have noticed the improvements across the creek at the waterfront of Governors’ Hall. The city government has installed a new promenade and plants, further polishing the image of the town. American Cruise Lines is a small cruise line with headquarters in Guilford, Conn., operational since 1991.

Dave Ryan is editor of the Dorchester Banner. He can be reached at dryan@newszap.com.

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