Although the ships that were built in Camden were intended for use outside of the safety of their berths here, the Camden Shipyard & Maritime Museum endeavors to give the memories of those ships, the shipbuilding industry from which they were born, and the maritime legacy of Camden, New Jersey, a permanent home and safe harbor.
The mission of the Camden Shipyard & Maritime Museum is to educate, inspire, and engage citizens about Camden's rich maritime heritage and significant contributions to global shipbuilding and seafaring exploration. The museum will be an anchor institution for cultural enrichment and community development for Camden's Waterfront South neighborhood.
We welcome you to enjoy our efforts, learn about the rich shipbuilding and maritime history of Camden, and even join us, as a volunteer, in helping us fulfill our mission. Subscribe to our mailing list to stay involved.
Maritime Hall provides visitors an opportunity to explore the rich history of shipbuilding in the City of Camden. Featuring many historic shipyard photos as well as select artifacts from the New York Shipbuilding Corp, the exhibit shows how "New York Ship" dominated industry and employment in the region throughout the decades, and played a significant role in building our country's naval might.
Matthew Henson Arctic Explorer Room and Community Gallery
Matthew Henson was not only the first African-American Arctic explorer, but he also had an interesting connection to the City of Camden and the historic church building which is now home to the Camden Shipyard & Maritime Museum. Our exhibit includes details of Henson's connection to Camden, historical recounts of his life and arctic adventures, and a supersized sculpture by renowned artist John Giannotti.
Shipyard Worker House Exhibit
The story of the shipyard worker has remained largely untold until now. Thousands of shipyard workers honed their crafts as machinists, carpenters, welders, painters, and more, but at the end of the work day, they returned to their neighborhoods in and around Camden. This exhibit focuses on the home life of the average shipyard worker and the impact of having a shipyard job on the shipyard worker's lives and families.
The museum is located in a turn of the century church partially made with stone used as ballast from Peary’s 1892 expedition to the Arctic. See original stained glass windows and gas light fixtures from the church’s construction in 1894.
In 2013 Urban Promises' Urban BoatWorks program moved into the former Parish Hall for the purpose of teaching area students science, technology, engineering, and mathematics through the hands-on boatbuilding program.