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Historic Ship, USS Olympia, Will Remain in Philadelphia

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(The USS Olympia, on Penn's Landing.  Photo by Mike DeNardo)

(The USS Olympia, on Penn’s Landing. Photo by Mike DeNardo)

Mike DeNardo Mike DeNardo
Mike DeNardo, a veteran of KYW Newsradio for more than 25 years,...
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By Mike DeNardo

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The search to find a new home for the historic steel cruiser, the USS Olympia, is over.  Officials say the ship will stay docked at Penn’s Landing.

For four years, the Independence Seaport Museum has been looking for a new home for the Olympia, the steel warship from the Spanish-American War moored on the Delaware riverfront (see related story).

The rusting ship needed millions of dollars for maintenance — money the museum didn’t have.  The search yielded candidates from California and South Carolina, but museum president John Brady says a review panel determined their offers weren’t viable.

“At the same time as that process was going on, we were kind of, ‘Well, what’s Plan B?’  And scrap or sink wasn’t it.  So we started looking at the ship as a venue” — a venue responsible for half of the museum’s 70,000 annual visitors.

Now, Brady says, the museum will promote tours and new activities on the ship, while a $20-million national fundraising campaign gets underway.

 

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