For the first time since 1994, the JOHN W. BROWN will visit New York.
She’ll dock at Pier 36 on the Lower East Side (299 South St at foot of Montgomery St.) and be open for tours, starting with a fundraising reception the evening of September 9 and ending with a 6-hour living history cruise on September 18. She departs for her homeport of Baltimore on the 19th.
The BROWN was built in Baltimore. She was named for a well-known labor leader and launched on Labor Day, 1942. Her maiden voyage was to New York where she picked up Jeeps, trucks and ammunition to aid Russia under the Lend-Lease Act and took them to the Persian Gulf. She transported troops and cargo in support of the WWII effort until 1945.
Sherod Cooper, author of Liberty Ship: The Voyages of the John W. Brown 1942-1946, published in 1997 by the Naval Institute Press, recalled the vessel’s wartime contributions.
The BROWN took part in D-Day and in the invasion of Southern France in 1944. Deep in its holds, the boat carried material to help rebuild a war-shattered Europe.
“Steaming a total of about 100,000 miles, she carried approximately 52,525 tons of cargo and more than a thousand troops from the United States to the war zones. It would require 11 freight trains of a hundred cars each to carry the cargo,” Cooper wrote. “While steaming between various Mediterranean ports, she moved about 15,585 tons of cargo, more than 5,100 troops, and 336 POWs. Inbound, the BROWN up to mid-August 1945 transported to the United States about 8,645 tons of cargo, about 1,000 POWs, and 770 homeward-bound GIs,” wrote Cooper
She became the only floating vocational high school upon her retirement in 1946. The BROWN served the NYC Board of Education training students in maritime fields until 1982.
After several years with the Reserve Fleet, she was towed to Baltimore in 1988 and all-volunteer Project Liberty Ship began restoration. She has been fully operational on steam since 1991. The JOHN W. BROWN is one of only two Liberty Ships that survive. The other survivor is the Jeremiah O’Brien tied up on the West Coast.
This is an opportunity to see triple-expansion steam engines at work. It is a trip into the past as well as the future because this is what we at LILAC aspire to–a fully operational steamship. Don’t miss it!
Schedule of Events
Friday, September 9, 5:00 to 8:00 PM
Marine Society of New York reception
$125.00 per person
RSVP by Sept 2 to Karen Laino, firstname.lastname@example.org, 212-425-0448
Saturday, September 10 to Saturday, September 17, 10:00 AM to 5:00 PM
Open ship. Both guided and self-guided tours available.
BOTH Saturdays are LIVE STEAM days. See the engines working at the pier as part of your tour.
Sunday, September 18, 8:00 AM (all aboard by 9:15, departure 10:00) to 4:00 PM Living History Cruise
$195.00 includes lunch, military flyover and more
For more information see www.ssjohnwbrown.org/new-york-2016/