3rd Photos Page
looking back through recent photos I see I've been onboard eight times
since my last posting. Lots of things have been going on including
a ship raid at the former Philadelphia Navy Shipyard, a visit by a
former captain of the ship, our annual fundraiser, the Battleship Blast,
and plenty of firings of our 5-inch gun. As usual I have the same
old excuses as to why I haven't posted any photos recently. This
time though I have a new excuse I'd like to share with you briefly, it
has to do with the plight of USS Olympia.
those of you who have followed the adventures of the ships Brass Team
over the years you know of my love of the Olympia. We've been
onboard her several times in the last two years volunteering and I'm
concerned about her future. The bottom line is that the
Independence Seaport Museum has told the Navy they can no longer afford
to take care of her and they will relinquish control of her in
November. Apparently the Navy has told them that sinking her as an
artificial reef off the coast of Cape May, NJ would be a responsible way
of disposing of her. This is a national treasure we are talking
about here, a one-of-a-kind example of the early steam-driven iron
ships that established this country as the global Naval power it is
today. There have been hull inspections done, towing reports
prepared and estimates established for the necessary repairs. The
towing report actually states the ship will sink at her moorings in
three years if nothing is done. The estimate calls for $10M worth of repairs which includes immediate repairs at her berth in
preparation for a tow, a tow to a dry dock, and then the necessary hull
repairs. In addition to the $10M for the repairs, the museum seeks
an additional $10M to establish an endowment to provide for maintenance of the ship
well into the future. This is definitely a
tidy some of money to be raised, but call me an optimist, I believe if
the people of this country knew about this story they would come to her
rescue. The Olympia is the oldest steel-hulled warship afloat, and she
hasn't been in a dry dock in 65 years, she is in dire straits.
What's been keeping me away from posting photos here is a letter writing
campaign to national television news broadcasts and other shows trying
to get them to run a story about this tragedy. To date the
situation hasn't been given the national awareness it deserves. In
order to save Commodore Dewey's flagship from being sunk as a reef I
urge you to join me and do whatever you can to raise public awareness
about Olympia's plight. If you like I can send you more
information and even copies of the letters I've written to get ideas for
your own. Time is running out though, and my mission is to get
the word out. Hopefully one of my letters will bring this story to
the national news, but if we all write letters we will dramatically improve
our chances for success. Please, do what you can to help save this
ship for future generations to visit and enjoy.
so now you know what I've been up to... Below are a bunch of photos taken since May
8th. I also wanted to post
some videos from the Battleship Blast of the fireworks and the firing of
the 5-inch gun, but the files are way too big. I'll have to do
some editing to get them down to a reasonable size to post. As
always we're always looking for volunteers to come down and help
out. In closing, keep the Olympia in your prayers, and do what you
can to help raise awareness of her situation.
shot looking straight out the barrel of the right side gun in Mount 52.
shot of the now infamous quad 40 mount at the former Philadelphia
Navy Yard. When we were there on our Ship Raid I took a bunch of
photos of the serial number plates on the guns in the hope of tracing
them back to the New Jersey. We've tried to get this mount for
time now, but have been unsuccessful to date. It would look
all cleaned up and sitting on the pier near the Battleship...
my old drill sergeant would have said when I was in basic training,
that's a perfect "sight picture." This is a shot taken
the right hand sight on the quad 40 mount pictured above.
S.S. John Brown was visiting town for the Memorial Day weekend. I
plan on going on a cruise on her out into the Chesapeake Bay in October.
She is one of the last operational Liberty Ships left in the
should be an interesting experience.
me, trying to clean up one of the large brass doors that protect
the optics for the range finder on Turret 2. They hadn't been
in a long time and were in need of some attention.
how the door looked after a days work. I didn't take a
before shot, but below is the Port side door of the same turret,
which gives you an idea of the difference.
one got the same treatment as the one above the next Saturday.
of Mount 52 on Memorial Day Weekend to give
the Flyers luck on their quest for the Cup...
weekend of June and the new canvas has arrived. It looks great!
I worked on those Range Finder doors just in time, because now
they have the new canvas installed around them.
couple of brass plates we polished and lacquered today.
There is a pair like this on each wing where the 40mm salute guns
are mounted. The lacquer should keep them shinning for a while.
June 26th, Admiral Katz, a former captain of the New Jersey
(8 Aug 1987 - 19 May 1989), and a group of crewmembers from
the '80s visited the ship. Here we see the Admiral departing,
in the background is a group of former crewman who lined up
as side boys and saluted as he departed.
preparation for the Battleship Blast I worked up on O5 today,
sprucing things up in the VIP viewing area for the July 4th fireworks.
By the end of the day everything was ready for inspection!
view forward from O5, look at that nice white canvas, looks great!
of the USS Bulkeley (DDG 84) moving up river past the New Jersey
being escorted by several fire boats. She was in port for the July
festivities and was open to the public for tours during her stay.
the USS Bulkeley passed by we fired
our Port side 40mm
salute gun. Here we see the ships curator doing the honors.
the USS Bulkeley passes by the USS
also fires a salvo to welcome her to Penn's Landing.
it's time to get the party started, time for the ships annual fund
raiser, the Battleship Blast to begin. The HyperSonics
this year and put on a great show. Plus I ask you guys, how often
do you get to see cute go-go dancers performing on top of Turret 1?
close up shot of the ladies.
surf-n-turf dinner is over now and the sun is
setting, it's almost time for the fireworks to begin.
a few of these guys were cruising about among the pleasure
boats gathered for the festivities. Pretty sweet little ride they
have there, I bet it can really haul a@@!
the fireworks we fired both 40mm salute guns and then Mount 52.
Last year I fired the 5-inch gun from inside the mount, sitting in the
seat. This year we have a remote trigger installed so the person
the gun stands out on deck and pulls the trigger. This is a frame
video of me firing the gun, I'm on the far left holding the remote
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