USS OLYMPIA Needs Your Help!

Please Contribute to the Michael Borsuk Memorial Fund for OLYMPIA

Click here to learn more about  Mike Borsuk, for whom this fund was named
Click here to take a virtual tour of OLYMPIA
Click here to go to the address for sending contributions by snailmail

If you have questions concerning this fund, email a representative by clicking here
The Cruiser OLYMPIA is one of the United States' greatest historical artifacts. The sole surviving warship of the Spanish American War and the early American steel navy, OLYMPIA is the third oldest U.S. naval  vessel in existence, after CONSTITUTION and CONSTELLATION. She is also one of only two protected cruisers still in existence worldwide (the other being Russia's AURORA).

Her importance in American history is virtually unparalleled. Serving as Admiral George Dewey's flagship at the Battle of Manila Bay, she remains as the sole surviving witness to the birth of the United States as a world power, and the beginning of what has been called "the American Century."

In spite of her importance, OLYMPIA needs your help! She has managed to survive, sometimes tenuously, since her decommissioning in 1922 through the efforts of many individuals and organizations. At present, the task has become the responsibility of Philadelphia's Independence Seaport Museum. Since receiving custody of the vessel in 1996, the Museum's staff has been working to stabilize her, and then intends to work toward her complete restoration. The task is daunting. The overall budget for restoration is estimated at over $30 million.

Before the restoration can move ahead, the vessel must be stabilized! Undetected by the Sunday afternoon visitors who walk her decks are problems that could threaten her ultimate survival UNLESS ACTION IS TAKEN NOW! Presently, more funds are desperately needed to get the process moving ahead. You can help by contributing to the Michael Borsuk Memorial Fund for OLYMPIA Preservation!! This fund has been created by his shipmates in honor of Michael Borsuk, a dedicated member of the ship's Living History Crew who passed away in June, 2000, and ALL proceeds of the fund go directly toward preserving OLYMPIA.

Mike Borsuk, serving as Ship's Chaplain on the OLYMPIA

The most immediate goal is to get the vessel into drydock to get her hull repaired. The OLYMPIA has not been drydocked in over fifty years. Areas of her hull have thinned to the point that, in some small areas, the hull has been breached and water floods the vessel's cofferdam at high tide! The vessel will require significant repairs just to make her seaworthy enough to get safely to a drydock. Your help is needed to get her there!!

Independence Seaport Museum has made tremendous strides since 1996 in trying to save the vessel for future generations. She has been provided with pumps to remove water, her decks coated to staunch the flow of rainwater, a fire protection system installed, toxic materials removed, had the vessel entirely repainted, and much more. The staff has been tireless in its efforts, but these hardworking folks cannot do it without your help!

Act now to help save this vessel. OLYMPIA and her crew fought to make this country great. You can pay back that debt by fighting for her today! CONSTITUTION and CONSTELLATION have been preserved, and now it is OLYMPIA's turn! The Spanish American War battle cry had been "Remember the MAINE". The new battle cry is "Remember the OLYMPIA!"

To help, please contribute what you can to the Michael Borsuk Memorial Fund for OLYMPIA Preservation! All contributions are tax deductible! Any amount, no matter how large or small, will be appreciated!

To contribute, please mail checks or money orders to:

Michael Borsuk Fund
c/o Development Department
Independence Seaport Museum
211 South Columbus Blvd.
Philadelphia, PA  19106-3199

      We are working toward direct on-line contribution capability...until then, please remember to mail your contribution!

The Restoration Proceeds! The skylight and hatch that were shown covered by tarps in the photo of Mike Borsuk, above, are shown here after their restoration to their original working form!

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