Devoted to the display of naval artifacts, models, documents and fine art, the museum chronicles the history of the United States Navy from the American Revolution to the present conflicts. Interactive exhibits commemorate our Navy's wartime heroes and battles as well as peacetime contributions in exploration, diplomacy, navigation and humanitarian service. Artifacts like USS Constitution's fighting top, the world's deepest diving submersible, Trieste, and the khaki uniform of former Fleet Admiral Chester W. Nimitz make The Navy Museum's collection second to none.
This museum was amongst America's earliest federal museums. Listed as one of Washington's most popular tourist attractions in Morrison's Strangers Guide to Washington, the collection impressed visitors with such artifacts as a gun from Spanish conquistador Hernan Cortes's conquest of Mexico, and the sloop Kearsarge's original sternpost containing a shell she received during her fight with the Confederate raider Alabama off the French coast.
National Museum of the United States Navy
Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m.
Weekends & *Holidays, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Cold War Gallery
Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m.
Weekends & *Holidays, by appointment only
(Note: Many places fill to capacity on busy, nice weather days, especially holiday weekends. Please call ahead or visit the official website to get the most up-to-date information before visiting.)
Admission to the National Museum of the U.S. Navy is free.
Explore the museum's exhibits and visit the Navy Yard.
The National Museum of the U.S. Navy was established in 1961 and opened to the public in 1963. As one of 14 Navy museums throughout the country, it is the only one that presents an overview of U.S. naval history. Permanent and temporary exhibitions commemorate the Navy's wartime heroes and battles as well as its peacetime contributions in exploration, diplomacy, navigation and humanitarian service.
Known for 40 years as the flagship museum of the U.S. Navy, The National Museum of the U.S. Navy celebrates a legacy of educating the public. In the tradition of its predecessors on the Washington Navy Yard beginning in 1865, the current museum features a collection that dates from 1800. As the Navy's collection of artifacts grew, so did the need for a space in which to display them. In 1865, the former Paint Shop (Building 10, pictured right) opened as the Museum of Naval Relics and Weapons where the Dispensary is today. This museum was amongst America's earliest federal museums.