USS Olympia

The USS Olympia, the only ship remaining from the Spanish-American War and one of two remaining from the First World War, will represent the Navy of those wars in the Navy and Marine 250th celebrations.

A protected cruiser launched in 1892, she is the oldest steel warship still afloat.

After Admiral Dewey told her captain, “You may fire when you are ready, Gridley," Olympia led the Navy to a decisive American victory in the Spanish-American War, which made the United States a naval and Pacific power. During World War I, Olympia protected America’s coast and escorted convoys across the Atlantic. After World War I, she carried home from France to Arlington National Cemetery the remains of the Unknown Soldier. Olympia has been preserved and is operated as a museum ship by Philadelphia’s Independence Seaport Museum. Olympia will be the unique cornerstone of the Navy and Marines 250th celebrations.

Marines and the USS Olympia bring home the Unknown Soldier after World War I
Credit: All images courtesy of the Independence Seaport Museum