On Friday, 9/4/15 the SS JOHN W BROWN moved from Pier 1 to Pier 13, next to the NS SAVANNAH to celebrate the end of WWII . Over a year ago, the Glenn L Martin Aviation Museum and National Electronics Museum held a meeting and invited us join them in a celebration of the 70th Anniversary of the end of WWII. There have been other events at the various museums in town and the celebration will culminate in a dance at the hanger of Glenn L Martin Airport. Information about the dance can be found on their website.
We left the pier at 9am on Friday; on board we had local photographers who rode along, we had diplomats from the Russian Embassy and some writers from Sputnik (news agency), and we had members from the Eisenhower Memorial Commission. Russia has a museum that is dedicated to the Lend Lead Program of WWII and wanted to learn more about the BROWN and our maiden voyage that was to the Persian Gulf to deliver goods to be transported to Russia during WWII. For the ride over to Pier 13 we flew the Russian flag and Fort McHenry flew their large American Flag for us as we went by.
Our home for the weekend was with the NS SAVANNAH, with whom we became fast friends; sharing meals, getting to know each other and each ship giving crew members tours of the ships that are not usually accessible by the public. Not only did we have our Russian friends on board Friday, but we had visitors from the Delaware Historical Society, Del Tech, the Glenn L. Martin Maryland Aviation Museum, National Electronics Museum, and the Maryland Women's Heritage Center.
On Saturday morning, our opening ceremony was interesting with lots of speakers from the listed organizations, including the NS SAVANNAH Association, and entertainment from The Ultimate Abbott & Costello Tribute Show. Below is a short YouTube clip of our own Joe Colgan who was instrumental in the planning of this event and was himself, Armed Guard on Liberty Ships during the war. He tells about where he was when he heard the war was over on 9/4/1945.
From noon to four on Saturday, we also had a beer tasting, courtesy of Max's Taphouse. They organized the event, they volunteered for it, and they got generous donations from the following breweries: DuClaw Brewing Co., Heavy Seas Beer, Shiner Beer, Flying Dog Brewery, Monument City Brewing Company, Full Sail Brewing Co., Harpoon Brewery, The Brewer's Art, Burley Oak Brewing Company, Mikkeller, Otter Creek Brewing, Great Divide Brewing Co., Elysian Brewing, Sly Fox Beer, Kronenbourg 1964, SBC Restaurant & Brewery, Stillwater Artisanal, and Breckenridge Brewery. Ice delivery was courtesy of Charm City Ice. The visitors really enjoyed having an iced drink after touring our old 'gal' in 90+degree weather. THANKS again!
We have so much more to say about this cool event, but some of it will have to wait for the other blogs...can't tell you everything all at once.... It was a wonderful, though hot weekend, but we had a good number of visitors, and many went on to buy Living History cruise tickets from us or made wonderful donations. Sales for the last cruise of the season end on September 18th so order yours now! Stay tuned...more to follow.
Special thanks to local photographer Joel Biallas who took the shot of the Russian flag on the ship. All other shots were taken by JWB staff Peter, Sabrina and Andrea. Stay tuned for another blog featuring the shots of the photographers that rode the ship on Friday for a photoshoot.
Project Liberty Ship, Inc is a 501(c)3 non-profit, all volunteer organization engaged in the preservation and operation of the historic ship JOHN W. BROWN as a living memorial museum. Gifts to Project Liberty Ship are tax deductible.