The volunteers and staff of the Battleship New Jersey Museum and Memorial are doing a fantastic job preserving, restoring, and interpreting the ship for current and future generations. In 2001 the Battleship New Jersey Museum and Memorial opened for tours on the Camden Waterfront. More than a million visitors have toured the ship over the past 15 years. The ship is directly across the river from Philadelphia, which hosts approximately 40 million tourists each year and is home to the USS Olympia, the oldest steel warship still afloat in the world. Today the New Jersey continues her ongoing mission – to teach the public the history and workings of this great ship, and the stories of the tens of thousands of Sailors and Marines who proudly served onboard from 1943 to 1991. Sometimes visitors hear those stories directly from the source – there are many former crewmembers who serve as tour guides, docents, and volunteers. The Battleship’s self-guided audio tours also feature crewmember stories, and the Museum has recorded the stories of more than 300 veterans through its ongoing Oral History program. The Battleship is also a fantastic resource for teaching kids about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. The New Jersey was a technological marvel when she was launched, and even in the 1980s and 90s she was equipped with state of the art weapons systems. The Battleship gives visitors guided and self-guided tours. One of the ways the museum seeks to educate visitors is by allowing them to “touch history.” Unlike some museum ships that put most of their spaces behind Plexiglas, the New Jersey lets visitors get up close and personal with the Ship. You can aim her .50 caliber machine guns. You can operate a hoist to take a 16” shell up to the gun house from the shell deck. You can load powder bags onto the hoists. You can even pull the trigger to fire the 16” guns (simulated, of course.) The ship has special events throughout the year, like World War II Victory Day and Vietnam War Living History Day. The Battleship offers group tours, many of which are taken by area schoolchildren. The ship can host any kind of event, like weddings, retirement parties, birthdays, book clubs, you name it. And the ship has an award winning overnight program. Groups of any size – from as small as one adult and one child, to as large as 250 adults and kids – can spend the night on the Battleship, sleeping in the bunks used by sailors, and eating dinner and breakfast in the mess hall. For one night, you can experience a taste of what life was like for Sailors and Marines on the ship.
Review from Guidestar