What is ShiPosium?


ShiPosium brings together preservationists, mariners, and historians from across the country to discuss the challenges, opportunities, and realities of conserving or utilizing heritage ships for modern purposes.

The ShiPosium is held in tandem with SSHSA’s Annual Conference, attended by SSHSA members from all over the country.  Attendees are invited to attend social gatherings, outings to local attractions, and special maritime-related tours, in addition to the ShiPosium.

The first ShiPosium was held in May 2012 aboard NS Savannah moored in Baltimore Harbor.  It included case studies of Savannah, SS Badger, SS Delta Queen, SS United States, and USS Olympia.  The keynote speaker was the Honorable Helen Delich Bentley, former U.S. Maritime Commissioner and 4-term member of the U.S. House of Representatives.  Ms. Bentley is and always has been an ardent supporter of the U.S. Merchant Marine.

ShiPosium II was held in Long Beach, California, and included a ride on the historic Los Angeles Harbor tugboat Angels Gate, currently owned and operated by the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, a behind the scenes tour of the museum, a visit to SS Lane Victory Museum in San Pedro, and a visit to the home of Peter Knego, an avid collector of furnishings from scrapped passenger liners, whose home is completely furnished with these items. The keynote speaker was Mark B. Perry, Executive Producer of “SS United States:  Lady in Waiting," a Primetime Emmy Award winner in 1993 for Picket Fences, and current writer and co-producer of ABC’s series Revenge.

The Newport Harbor Hotel and Marina in Newport, Rhode Island, hosted ShiPosium III in 2014. The conference included a reception at the former home of William King Covell III, one of SSHSA's founders, as well as a tour of the International Yacht Restoration School and a cruise around Newport Harbor on the classic motor yacht Rum Runner II. The keynote speaker was Dennis Hale, author of Shipwrecked:Reflections of the Sole Survivor. He told a captivating story about the sinking of the Daniel J. Morrell and his subsequent struggle to survive while clinging to a life raft. Click here for pictures and a full recap of the ShiPosium III.


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