About The Exhibit

The Exhibits

At the heart of the USS Monitor Center is the exhibition—Ironclad Revolution—a melding of artifacts, original documents, paintings, personal accounts, interactives and environments that will pique all five senses. The strategies, people, technology, and science behind the historic circumstances surrounding this story will be displayed in a way the public has never before seen.




Visitors may:

  • Walk down a mock dock and enter the CSS Virginia as she is being built for battle.
  • Build your own virtual ironclad
  • Step inside the Battle Theater and experience the action during the Battle of Hampton Roads
  • Visit the living quarters of the sailors, or walk on the deck of a full-scale reproduction of the vessel that changed naval warfare
  • Participate in the raising of the turret by NOAA and Navy crews in the Recovery Theater
  • See replicas of the famous turret as it was built, as it was brought up from the ocean floor, and then see the REAL turret

Batten Conservation Complex

This state-of-the-art facility provides visitors with a view of the delicate process of preserving history. The conservation facility offers visitors:

  • A first-hand look at conservation of the turret, steam engine, and much more.
  • A much needed resource for training, research and consultation in the conservation field
  • Exhibits on the fascinating blend of the art and science of conservation

The Resources

The USS Monitor Center is a definitive national repository, bringing together hundreds of artifacts from the Monitor and a voluminous collection of archives, all being made available for research and study to the public. As a resource, the USS Monitor Center offers:

  • A wide array of educational programs for school children, adults, families and scholars
  • Conferences, seminars and workshops
  • Internships for students of history, archaeology, conservation and museum studies

We're in a race to conserve history! Follow along as artifacts are uncovered and more facts are learned about the Monitor and the men who served aboard!

From the heart breaking accounts of life aboard the ironclads to thrilling descriptions of the battles recounted by those who witnessed them you're sure to learn something new!