When anchored, ships offer a variety of activities for young sailors, including exciting rounds of Extreme Ship Makeover and attempts to fit them into large glass bottles. Explore a more refined shipping scene with today's Groupon: for $4, you get one admission and self-guided tour of the USS Salem, docked near the Fore River Bridge in Quincy (up to an $8 value).
Self-guided tours of the USS Salem, one of the nation's only preserved naval heavy cruisers, indulge history buffs with Cold War naval history at their own pace. Commissioned in 1949, the USS Salem served a 10-year career patrolling the Atlantic and Mediterranean as a lady of diplomacy, where she hosted ambassadors, royalty, and pirates disguised as fish sticks. Climb aboard the great ship, which now rests in the former Quincy Fore River Shipyard, and explore its individual narrative while honoring those who served on it through a variety of exhibitions and memorials. A map of the ship’s explorable zones and a brochure chock-full of historical tidbits will aid maritime meandering.
In 1949, the USS Salem began its 10-year career patrolling the Atlantic Ocean and Mediterranean Sea. A flagship of the 6th Fleet during the Cold War era, it served as a “Lady of Diplomacy,” using its massive canons to impress ambassadors, not to fire on enemies. The ship also made headlines in 1953 when it harbored refugees from Greece following a massive earthquake.
Today permanently docked in Quincy Fore River Shipyard, the Salem is one of the last preserved naval heavy cruisers in the world. Three quarters of the ship is used to honor the history of those who served, with features including a Navy SEALs exhibit, the USS Newport News Memorial Room, and a US Navy Cruiser Sailor Memorial. In addition to memories, the Salem also hosts birthday parties and overnight adventures filled with simulated battles and real-life survival instruction. If they listen closely, visitors might even hear some of the spooky sounds that earned the ship a feature on the SyFy channel’s Ghost Hunters in 2009.