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Traveling Exhibitions

Traveling Exhibitions

Host an exhibition from The Mariners’ Museum!

Exhibition Contents

Each exhibition arrives fully crated. Photo exhibitions are framed and ready to hang. Condition report forms and interpretive materials accompany each exhibition.

Booking Periods and Scheduling

The exhibition may be booked for periods of eight weeks. Longer periods may be arranged. Borrowers must make a written request for an available time period. When the exhibition request has been received and the exhibition dates have been determined, The Mariners’ Museum will send a contract to confirm arrangements and specify conditions of the exhibition loan.

Loan Fees

Loan fees cover the exhibition period of two months plus adequate time for installation and dismantling. Fifty percent of the fee is due upon signing of the contract, and the balance is due upon receipt of the exhibit.


The exhibiting institutions must insure each exhibition during transit to and from each venue. Insurance must also cover the exhibition while in possession of the borrower.

Condition Reports

The Mariners’ Museum will provide condition report forms and instructions with the exhibition so that borrowers may report the condition of the exhibition within 48 hours of unpacking. The Mariners’ Museum Registrar must be notified immediately of any loss or damage which has occurred during transit, unpacking, display, or re-packing. No damages may be repaired without the consent of The Mariners’ Museum. Both incoming and outgoing condition reports are required for all exhibitions.


Exhibiting institutions are required to credit The Mariners’ Museum on all public announcements, press releases, invitations, posters, and any promotional material associated with the exhibition. To aid in publicizing the exhibition, The Mariners’ Museum will send a press release package including sample press release and publicity photographs in advance of the exhibition’s opening date.


The Mariners’ Museum will be responsible for shipping arrangements, which will be made one to two months prior to the exhibition opening. Exhibiting institutions are responsible for all shipping charges. Every effort will be made to provide the safest and least expensive means of transportation and to deliver and pick up the exhibition exhibition at a mutually convenient time. Shipping estimates will be provided to the borrower upon request.


The borrower must provide an exhibition space designed for the display of works of art. The exhibition must be installed in a building whose facilities have met The Mariners’ Museum requirements. Facility reports will be required of the borrower.


For more information on the exhibitions, please contact one of our staff below:

Jeanne Willoz-Egnor
Director of Collections Management
Curator of Scientific Instruments
(757) 591-7764
[email protected]

Priscilla Hauger
Director of Exhibitions
(757) 591-7770
[email protected]
Fax (757) 591-7335

The following exhibitions are available:

  • A. Aubrey Bodine and the Chesapeake Bay
  • From Dream to Reality: SS United States
  • A Maritime Album
  • Waters of Despair, Waters of Hope: African-Americans and the Chesapeake Bay
  • Message in a Bottle

Aubrey Bodine and the Chesapeake Bay

pp2202_self_portraitA true son of the Chesapeake, A. Aubrey Bodine was born in Baltimore in 1906. He became interested in photography as a teenager, and at only twenty-one he began working as a photographer for the Baltimore Sun—a professional relationship that would last a half-century. Every week Bodine’s work was featured in the newspaper’s popular Sunday magazine. Whether photographing watermen, cypress trees, or a Maryland power plant, Bodine showed a unique artistic vision and a Weighing Fish on The Docklove of the life and landscape of the Chesapeake Bay throughout his work. p5083weighingfishondockHis exquisite photographs instantly distinguished him from other photographers and created in their viewers an awareness and keen appreciation of the beauty and diversity of the region. This exhibit is drawn from material Bodine himself submitted to The Mariners’ Museum for an exhibition of marine photographs, as well as from a collection of 337 original photographs generously donated to the Museum by the Bodine family in 1994.

Contents:  4 aluminum framed graphic panels-approximately 38″ x 74″ x 1″ hinged together to form a two-sided, freestanding display

Space required:  200 square feet

Shipping:  Arranged by The Mariners’ Museum and paid by host

Insurance:  Host provides

Exhibition Period:  8 weeks

Exhibition Fee:  $750

From Dream to Reality: SS United States

ssus_exteriorA lifelong dream of designer William Francis Gibbs, the passenger liner SS United States was an engineering feat unequaled in history. Gibbs incorporated into the ship’s design every possible refinement of naval architecture and technology. Although her design phase had occupied five years, with the cooperation of the United States Navy, the United States Lines, and the Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company, the United States was completed in twenty-eight months and twelve days. Traveling at a remarkable 35.9 knots (nearly 42 land miles per hour) on her maiden voyage, she became the fastest liner ever to cross the Atlantic, reducing the Atlantic crossing time by more than ten hours.  ssus_interiorThe SS United States ruled the North Atlantic seaway until the late 1960s, when less expensive air transportation and rising operating costs began to render her operation uneconomical. In 1969, after her four hundredth voyage, the liner was berthed at Newport News and, following a variety of financial problems, was sold in 1992 to a Turkish interest. She is currently docked in Philadelphia.

The photographs in this exhibition document the SS United States‘ construction, interiors, sea trials, and arrival in New York Harbor.

Contents:  24 black-and-white framed photographs, two mounted photographs and one mounted photo mural (3 sections 3′ x 8′), one introductory title and text panel, individual labels. Frame sizes: 17″ x 22″, 24″x 28″, 32″x 27″, 28″ x 39″

Space Required:  Approximately 150 running feet

Exhibition Period:  8 weeks

Exhibition Fee:  $1,000

A Maritime Album

maritime_2The exhibition contains 100 photographs selected by eminent photographic historian John Szarkowski, retired Curator of Photography of New York’s Museum of Modern Art, with accompanying text by Richard Benson, Dean of the Art School at Yale University.

The exhibition spans the history of photography, tracing technical and aesthetic developments along the way. Photography was invented in 1839 during an age of optimism and growth in the United States. Geographic expansion and rapid industrial development showed a vigorous society on its onward march, and the camera was tailor-made to reflect the accomplishments of the era. Nowhere is this more vividly illustrated than in photographers’ documentation of maritime themes, from the most elevated and formal to the most intimate and domestic. Maritime traditions and culture have always been a great source of pride. The surviving photographic record as presented in this exhibition is powerful testimony to the ways in which the sea has permeated every aspect of national life, from the grand spectacle of naval fleet reviews to the lone fisherman adrift at sea.

Included in the exhibition are photographs showing a wide array of American and foreign watercraft; ship construction and launchings; the wreck of the Adler in 1889; the seven-masted schooner Thomas Lawson under sail; construction of Minots Ledge Lighthouse in 1859; large and small fishing operations in the Chesapeake Bay and off the coast of New England; the Great White Fleet under way; the first flight by Eugene Ely off the deck of the Birmingham in 1910; wave-swept decks and ice-covered fishing boats; advancements in propulsion technology from sail to steam; women factory workers in the Philadelphia Navy Yard in 1918; naval vessels and activities during World War II; and a full-plate daguerreotype of Donald McKay, one of America’s premier shipbuilders.

Contents:  100 framed black-and-white photographs, one introductory text panel, ten descriptive essay panels, and 100 caption labels (50 photograph show available for $2,500)

Space Required:  Approximately 350 running feet

Shipping:  Arranged by The Mariners’ Museum and paid by host

Insurance:  Host provides

Exhibition Period:  8 weeks

Exhibition Fee:  $5,000

Waters of Despair, Waters of Hope: African-Americans and the Chesapeake Bay

harpers13_1856p452osmanSince the early 1600s, Africans and their descendants have played important roles in the history and economy of the Chesapeake Bay. These skilled craftsmen and women helped build the communities and culture that shaped everyday life, while their labor supported the regional industries and the naval presence that still dominate the Bay’s economy.

In turn, the Chesapeake Bay has played an important role in the history of African-Americans. The Bay’s waterways fed the plantation system that drove the slave trade. At the same time, marine avenues also offered slaves many pathways to freedom. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.pp2695ussmasoncrew

African-Americans also faced unique dilemmas during times of war: should they choose loyalty or a chance for freedom by supporting the opposing forces? Later accepted as full-fledged military personnel, they have played an integral part in our naval forces.

African-Americans have also been involved in the modern commerce of the Chesapeake region. From employment in industries such as shipbuilding, port facilities, merchant shipping, to commercial fishing, their contributions have helped make the Bay a global economic center.


  • 30 framed digital graphic/text panels – 44 1/2″ x 86″ x 11/2″
    (3 panels have attached artifacts in cases and 1 painting)
  • 1 wooden platform with digital repeater as part of oyster shucking station including a shucking stand, table, basket of oysters, and oyster tongs
  • 1 3′ x 5′ photomural of painting
  • 2 freestanding digital repeaters in crates
  • interactive reproduction oyster shells with questions and answers

Optional – Additional items may be provided upon request with adjustment in rental fee and shipping costs including:

  • A video tape of workers at Newport News Shipbuilding. (Lender will need to provide their own video equipment)
  • Pilings used for panel supports, netting, and crab pots.

Educational Component:  Newspaper In Education (supplement); Supporting section of The Mariners’ Museum web site; Traveling trunk

Space Required:  1,500-1,700 square feet

Shipping:  Arranged by The Mariners’ Museum and paid by host

Exhibition Period:  8 weeks

Exhibition Fee:  $5,000

Message in a Bottle

Message in a Bottle banner

It’s estimated that each year over 14 billion pounds of garbage and over 230 million plastic bottles are dumped into the world’s oceans. This exhibition highlights the work of photographer, Andy Hughes. From his series: Dominant Wave Theory, these photographs focus on the accumulation of garbage washed up on the shores where Andy surfs. These visually compelling and provocative works serve as a back drop for the sometimes challenging relationship between man and his environment.

The wasted plastic form is a predominate theme in my work. These images are meant to engage the viewer to consider a key pressing dilemma of our modern existence; they search for a dialogue between attraction and repulsion, discord and harmony. Humanity seems drawn by desire—a chance to succeed, to consume and to create, however we are consciously or unconsciously aware that much of the world is suffering as a result of our desires. Our dependence on oil and plastic with which provides packaging and material for our consumption is feeding an ever increasing mountain of junk on land and in the sea.

These abandoned washed objects speak to us now, however they will eventually and ultimately become buried by the forces of nature. Crushed by the forces of the earth, they will in the future be the markers by which our current technological civilization may be uncovered

—Andy Hughes

Contents:  16 mounted 34” x 34” color photographs, introductory text panel, artist’s statement panel, and labels

Space Required:  Approximately 122 running feet

Shipping:  Arranged by The Mariners’ Museum and paid by host.

Insurance:  Host provides

Exhibition Fee:  $1,500

Exhibition Period:  8 weeks