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Our Educational Mission: The SS United States Center for Design & Discovery

Our Vision

As we work to secure the future of our nation's sole remaining ocean liner, the SS United States Conservancy is also hard at work planning for a future shipboard museum and education center. The SS United States Center for Design & Discovery will feature exciting and inspiring displays that explore the SS United States’ emergence as a singular American post-war achievement. The museum will explore a range of compelling themes, including 20th century industrial innovation, the transatlantic liner era, and American cultural identity and artistic expression.

Journeys of discovery will offer themed experiences that transport visitors back to the “Mad Men” era. A stunning collection of art and artifacts will showcase the mid-century modern design aesthetic. Guided by a high-level advisory board of thought leaders and experts, the museum will pursue strategic partnerships as it addresses 21st century education and leadership challenges, particularly around science, engineering and technological innovation.

Our Progress

In 2012 we convened a formal design charrette in which some two dozen experts in museum planning, marketing, and exhibit design gathered to help generate the SS United States Center for Design & Discovery’s interpretive plans and renderings.

We mounted a major exhibition at New York’s Forbes Galleries entitled “The Ocean Liner United States: The Past & Future of America’s Superliner” and launched a public programming series. We are actively exploring additional exhibition opportunities, including an upcoming partnership with the Norman Rockwell Museum, in tandem with the release of renowned author-illustrator David Macaulay’s forthcoming book on the SS United States.

We also continue to expand the Conservancy’s permanent collection of SS United States artifacts, historical documents, artwork and fixtures as well as our vintage film and photography archive.

Our Plans

With support from our generous donors, the Conservancy will advance plans for the SS United States Center for Design & Discovery as well as continue to expand our permanent collections, develop additional traveling and temporary exhibitions, launch an oral history initiative, and design educational modules that explore the role of the SS United States in the context of Cold War history, labor relations, maritime transportation, immigration, race and ethnicity, and other themes

Thank you for helping us celebrate and preserve the SS United States’ unique cultural, historical and technological legacy!


The Conservancy's curatorial collections continue to expand, thanks to our generous supporters and donors, ensuring that the unique history of the SS United States will never be forgotten. Do you own artwork, objects or photographs from America's Flagship? Click HERE to find out how you can make a donation, or reach out at

Not ready to part with your SS United States memorabilia? We're cataloguing the location and ownership of items from the vessel in advance of future exhibitions. Fill out our object loan survey HERE.

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