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CJDaley
12-10-2007, 12:30 AM
On the way home from one of my son's doctor appointments we took a detour into the Mariner's Museum in VA.

If any of you are in this area on vacation or business, you must take time to see the museum. I could have spent all day there as they have a great exhibit on Nelson and another on the Chesapeake Bay, but the real reason I went was the Monitor.

While the reproduction Monitor is the centerpiece of the new museum wing, I really liked the galleries leading up to the exhibit talking about the evolution of iron sides and the use of steam vs. wind in war fare are amazing. They have a few interactive exhibits as well for the kids (and me) where you get to build and test sail your every own design for an iron side.

Anyway, it's only a few bucks to get in and right off the main highway and it's worth it even if you aren't into naval history.

Here is the link: http://www.mariner.org/exhibitions/ussmonitorcenter/

By a strange coincidence I ran into one of the conservators at a Christmas party the same night and secured an invite to walk into the turret when they drain the conservation tanks and turn it right side up. Pretty cool.

Union Navy
12-10-2007, 12:59 PM
Great exhibit. Some of us Navy-types were there earlier this year for the exhibit opening. Save a lot of time to visit - there's a lot to see and much well-researched detail. GO NAVY!

IowaYank
12-10-2007, 11:10 PM
Chris, I agree with your assertation that you can spend all day there. I was there last June and myself and my father did indeed spend all day in the building. LOTS to look at. Any time period you could want is there.Great museum!!

RoanokeRifle
12-13-2007, 12:23 AM
I was there when this exhibit opened. Impressive.

I liked the scale Virginia you could walk aboard during construction, see the cut away view of the siding. Aso, the recreated interior cabins of the Monitor were something to see. with the fine wood paneling, and the fancy fixtures, it was'nt at all the U-boat like conditions I always imagined.

Anyway, I agree it's worth a visit.

Cpt Boone
12-13-2007, 09:36 AM
Well, I reenlisted in the National Guard after a 12 year absence. I will be attending school for 4 1/2 months at Ft. Eustis, VA from May to Sept '08. I will definately look it up. Plan on seeing alot when I have time off. Thanks for the post Chris.

civilwarcaptain
12-22-2007, 08:00 PM
I was there when it opened, it was a great exibit.

Brian Ewing

CJDaley
12-23-2007, 10:59 AM
Well, I reenlisted in the National Guard after a 12 year absence. I will be attending school for 4 1/2 months at Ft. Eustis, VA from May to Sept '08. I will definately look it up. Plan on seeing alot when I have time off. Thanks for the post Chris.

As I've said, I'll be happy to give you a behind the scenes tour of the museums I work for. You could spend every weekend of that 4.5 months visiting a different historic site and not see everything in this area. I'm really loving being a new resident of the Peninsula.

VA-Patriot'61
01-06-2008, 01:17 PM
I was finally able to take a gander at the exhibit while I was home on leave in Yorktown for Christmas. I watched the Monitor project develop over the years and had the pleasure of being on the Honor Guard when they brought the Monitor's turret in to Newport News in 2002. It was a sight (and smell) to behold, it is really neat what they have managed to do over the years to preserve the artifacts and really put together a top notch exhibit. Anyone who is in the area should really take some time to stop by and walk through. I wish I had more time to view the other exhibits in the museum as I spent all my time going through the Monitor display.

Gary of CA
01-10-2008, 11:00 PM
Went there last year and it was much better than when I went almost 4 years earlier. They have the new interpretive wing with the mock-up of part of the Virginia. You can see progress on the conservation efforts on some parts of the Monitor.

Don't forget to see the Virginia War Museum. It's a few miles down the road and has the collection of uniforms belonging to the Company of Military Historians. They've also got an excellent gun collection (all periods) and a 240 mm Railroad gun outside.

CJDaley
01-11-2008, 06:54 AM
Went there last year and it was much better than when I went almost 4 years earlier. They have the new interpretive wing with the mock-up of part of the Virginia. You can see progress on the conservation efforts on some parts of the Monitor.

One of the best exhibits was set up like an engineers design room. They had a huge oak table with computer monitors set into it, then you got to build your own iron clad. You get to choose the hull, armor plating, artillery, propulsion and size...then you get to see how well it does sailing and fighting in battle...my first three ships were too heavy with armor plating and sunk right out of dry dock. My 4th ship did sail, but after a short battle it was named the USS Adequate :(


Don't forget to see the Virginia War Museum. It's a few miles down the road and has the collection of uniforms belonging to the Company of Military Historians. They've also got an excellent gun collection (all periods) and a 240 mm Railroad gun outside.

I just haven't had a chance to get there year. It's only a few miles from my office and still haven't had the chance. I hope to get there sometime this winter before the tourist season kicks in.

JimCarrol
01-18-2008, 10:38 PM
I was fortunate enough to be able to visit the exibit... It was excellent... The kids even liked it...