UPDATE: Great news! On November 18th, the museum announced that tours will be continued on a reduced schedule and a summit will be held in early 2011 to explore future options. There are still many issues to be resolved but funds were made available to make needed interim repairs. Thanks to all who are continuing to work on this project!
This may be the last weekend that you will have the opportunity to visit the Cruiser Olympia.
The City, State, and Nation may soon be losing an important piece of the Nation's history.
The Independence Seaport Museum in Philadelphia has announced that they will cease tours of the Cruiser Olympia on November 22. The Spanish-American War Cruiser Olympia is the world's oldest floating steel warship and a National Historic Landmark. She served as Commodore George Dewey's Flagship during the Battle of Manila Bay. In February, the museum announced that they were unable to fund the ongoing restoration and maintenance of the Olympia. They have been trying to secure funding over the last several years but to date have been unsuccessful.
Today, the Cruiser no longer is a priority in the Museum's long term strategic plan, and there is a very real possibility that the Cruiser Olympia will be scrapped or sunk off the New Jersey coast to create an artificial reef.
The future of the Cruiser Olympia remains in question as the museum continues to search for funding and looks at various options for the ship's future. If funding is not found, this may be one of the last chances to visit this historic ship.
Despite the economic times that we are living through today, the loss of this ship would be irreplaceable and a tremendous long term loss for the country. Hopefully some organization, museum, or individuals will be able to devise a creative solution allowing the continued restoration, display, and existence of this landmark.
Don't miss the opportunity to visit this historic Cruiser!
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