Things have been busy here at the Camden Shipyard and Maritime Museum! From artifact donations to renovations and everything in between, the museum is transforming and progressing every day.
Thanks to some generous individuals, the museum has acquired some new and interesting artifact donations. One such donation is a century old presentation book picturing vessels built at Cramp’s Shipyard in Philadelphia.
We also received ephemera in the form of launching, christening, and commissioning programs from ships including the U.S.S. New Jersey, Bremerton, Guam, Alaska, Princeton, Curtiss, Valley Forge, Washington, Los Angeles, Chicago and Antietam. Most of these ships were commissioned at the Philadelphia Naval Shipyard but many were built by the New York Shipbuilding Company in Camden.
These NY Shipbuilding vessels include the Bremerton, Guam, Alaska, and Curtiss. Although the Princeton honored here in 1945 was built in Philadelphia, descriptions of the second and third Princetons are included in the donated program and tell of their origins as Camden-born ships.
Another interesting item included in the donation is a program for the Navy Relief Society at the Academy of Music, complete with Edward Murrow’s autograph!
Our current volunteers Sarah and Lauren, as well as our intern Kim have been busy with a number of projects. Depending on what the museum’s most pressing needs are at the time, one might find them researching ships built at the New York Shipbuilding Company, creating a contact database, sending out emails, photographing new donations, organizing the office, moving artifacts, updating the museum’s Facebook page (please “like” us there!), updating the blog, or even planting bulbs on the grounds!
Kim has a particular interest in a lightship built here in Camden. She (the ship) has lived a longer life than most (ships AND people) and is one of the earliest ships built here by New York Shipbuilding in 1904. She's also back here in Camden. Can we do anything to save her?
The next big step regarding the physical aspect of the museum is construction on the parish hall and chapel buildings, set to begin in December. Grantors for this project include NJHT and the Camden County Open Space Preservation Trust. When construction is complete, Urban Boat Works will be able to move back in next September.
Keep checking back for more happenings at the Camden Shipyard and Maritime Museum!