May 022017

GreenPort Maritime Museum

Apr 192017

Engraving of Kilroy on the WWII Memorial in Washington DC

Apr 182017
Jan 302017


  • The Teutonic Knights – “Ordo domus Mariae Sanctae Theutonicorum Hierosolimitanorum” – a catholic religious order formed in Palestine during the late twelfth century by German crusaders, received Țara Bârsei (“Terra Borza” or “Burzenland” – a country named after the Cuman tribe of Burci) from King Andrew II of Hungary. The purpose of this gift was to establish the Teutons in the area and to defend the Southeastern border of Transylvania from the Cumans and the Pechenegs.
  • The Teutons erected a fortress in Bran (a Turkish name meaning “gate”), before they were driven away from the area in 1226.
Jan 302017


  • Poenari Castle ([po.eˈnarʲ]), also known as Poenari Citadel (Cetatea Poenari in Romanian), is a ruined castle in Romania, notable for its connection to Vlad III the Impaler. Access to the citadel is made by climbing the 1,480 concrete stairs.
Jan 302017

What you are now, we used to be. What we are now, you will be.


  • The crypt is located just under the Church of Santa Maria della Concezione in Rome, a church commissioned by Pope Urban VIII in 1626. The pope’s brother, Cardinal Antonio Barberini, who was of the Capuchin Order, in 1631 ordered the remains of thousands of Capuchin friars exhumed and transferred from the friary on the Via dei Lucchesi to the crypt. The bones were arranged along the walls in varied designs, and the friars began to bury their own dead here, as well as the bodies of poor Romans, whose tomb was under the floor of the present Mass chapel. Here the Capuchins would come to pray and reflect each evening before retiring for the night.
  • The crypt, or ossuary, now contains the remains of 4,000 friars buried between 1500–1870, during which time the Roman Catholic Church permitted burial in and under churches. The underground crypt is divided into five chapels, lit only by dim natural light seeping in through cracks, and small fluorescent lamps. The crypt walls are decorated extensively with the remains, depicting various religious themes. Some of the skeletons are intact and draped with Franciscan habits, but for the most part, individual bones are used to create the elaborate ornamental designs.
Nov 242016

USS Missouri BB63

  • This is the Battleship USS Missouri BB63 that Japan surrenders on in Tokyo Bay, Sept. 02, 1945
  • Pearl Harbor Memorial
Nov 242016

USS Iowa BB61, lead ship of a class of 45,000-ton battleships, was built at the New York Navy Yard, Brooklyn, New York. Commissioned in February 1943, she spent her initial service in the Atlantic and carried President Franklin D. Roosevelt to and from Casablanca, Morocco, in November 1943. Early in January 1944, Iowa steamed to the Pacific, where she took part in the Marshalls Campaign later in that month and in February. From then until the end of 1944, she was actively involved in raids against Japanese facilities and campaigns to capture the Marianas, the Palaus and Leyte, including participation in the Battles of the Philippine Sea and Leyte Gulf.After overhaul in early 1945, Iowa returned to the western Pacific for the Okinawa campaign and the final operations against Japan. She was present in Tokyo Bay during the formal surrender of Japan on 2 September 1945. She returned to the United States later in that month and operated with the Pacific Fleet until she was decommissioned in March 1949.The Korean War brought Iowa back into active service. She was recommissioned in August 1951 and made a combat deployment to Korean waters in April-October 1952, during which time she served as Seventh Fleet flagship. Upon return to the U.S., she was transferred to the Atlantic Fleet. Over the next several years, Iowa made several European cruises and was present for the International Naval Review in Hampton Roads, Virginia, in June 1957. She was decommissioned in February 1958.After two and a half decades in “mothballs”, Iowa was modernized under the 1980s defense buildup and recommissioned in April 1984. She went to European waters in 1985, 1986 and 1987-88, with the latter cruise continuing into the Indian Ocean and Arabian Sea. A fire in her second sixteen-inch gun turret killed 47 crewmen on 19 April 1989, but Iowa was still able to deploy to Europe and the Mediterranean Sea in mid-year. Turret two remained unrepaired when she decommissioned for the last time in October 1990. USS Iowa is presently part of the Reserve Fleet.


Nov 142016

Benjamin Franklin (1706–1790), American scientist, diplomat, and one of the authors of the Declaration of Independence, identified himself as a printer. He wrote his own epitaph long before he died: “The Body of BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, Printer. Like the Covering of an old Book, Its contents torn out and stript of its Lettering and Gilding, Lies here, Food for Worms. But the Work shall not be lost, It will (as he believ’d) appear once more In a new and more beautiful Edition Corrected and amended By the Author.”

Franklin apprenticed in the Boston printing shop of his brother James from the age of twelve, but ran away at seventeen to Philadelphia. In 1724 he was sent to London where he worked as a printer in the firm of John Watts (where this press is said to have been used) before returning to Philadelphia in 1726. By 1730 he had set up his own printing business and published a newspaper, which gave him a forum for political expression. His political activities led to his involvement in the movement to free the Colonies from British rule. He spent the years 1757–1762 and 1764–1775 in England, returning to Philadelphia to participate in the First Continental Congress. From 1776–1785 he served in France, securing vital French assistance for the American revolutionary effort.
The Franklin press in the Museum’s collection is an English common press made early in the eighteenth century. It was on exhibition in the U.S. National Museum beginning in the 1880s, and it was shown in the Hall of Printing and Graphic Arts in this museum from 1964 to 2003. It is missing some of its parts, such as its gallows, tympan, and frisket, so it cannot be operated. A full-sized working replica of the press was made in 1984 for the Museum’s exhibition, Life in America–After the Revolution.
The story of how this press came to be associated with Franklin is rather complicated. While in England in 1768, Franklin is said to have visited the Watts firm and saluted the press in the shop where he had worked some 25 years before. A plaque added to the press in 1833 reads:
“Dr. Franklin’s Remarks relative to this Press, made when he came to England as agent of Massachusetts, in the year 1768. The Doctor at this time visited the printing office of Mr. Watts, of Wild Street, Lincoln’s Inn Fields, and going up to this particular press (afterwards in the possession of Messrs. Cox & Son, of Great Queen Street, of whom it was purchased) thus addressed the men who were working at it. ‘Come my friends, we will drink together. It is now forty years since I worked like you, at this press, as a journeyman printer.’ The Doctor then sent out for a gallon of porter, and he drank with them- “Success to Printing”
Franklin’s visit was recalled by elderly printers who testified to the identity of the press three-quarters of a century later. In 1841 the press was presented as “the Franklin press” to American banker John B. Murray, who received it for the express purpose of exhibiting it to attract contributions for the London Printers’ Pension Society. He shipped it to the United States to be displayed as a relic associated with Franklin. It was shown at the Patent Office, the Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, and the Smithsonian’s U.S. National Museum before being sold to the Smithsonian by Murray’s widow in 1901.
Currently not on view
press, printing
ca 1720
Franklin, Benjamin
Franklin, James
Watts, John
Murray, John M.
wood (overall material)
iron (overall material)
steel (overall material)
brass (overall material)
overall: 78 in x 30 1/2 in x 57 in; 198.12 cm x 77.47 cm x 144.78 cm
United Kingdom: England
Culture and the Arts: Graphic Arts
National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center
Harris, Elizabeth M.. Printing Presses in the Graphic Arts Collection

Attribution\Photo Description

  • National Museum of American History
Oct 232016

Attribution\Photo Description