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Author Topic: As we look at OUR museums around the country struggling by  (Read 9809 times)
Darrin
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« on: June 09, 2014, 05:03:45 PM »

I have to ask the question once more, WHY in the hell wont the owners of the titles to these pieces of history just give us the chance to maintain our heritage and NOT put up road block after road block and then finally drive us off of our beloved pieces of history, that we are MAINTAINING with our OWN TIME AND MONEY. There are a few different museum submarines that have had an incredible crew following leave due to Piss Poor Management (PPM) don't these fools whom are supposed to oversee these pieces of histories understand what it means what happens ONCE the volunteer crew leaves?

Why can't they whom control the shoe string budget realize that the VOLUNTEERS are giving so very much more then their museums are paying to maintain these artifacts at NO COST or little cost to the museum..

Sorry folks, off of my soap box now

Darrin
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Jim
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« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2014, 11:26:14 AM »

Except for the Razorback, doesn't the Navy "own" the title?
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Darrin
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« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2014, 07:58:15 PM »

Jim,

You are correct about the Razorback, she was brought back with a clean title from a different country and the Navy has NO say in how she is maintained. As far as the rest of the museum community is concerned submarine wise the Navy does have some say in if the boat is neglected to the point of being unsafe or no longer watertight. When a vessel gets donated to a museum the Navy has stipulations and inspections that are required annually.

To my knowledge there are only 3 vessels that do not have to meet Navy saftey inspections and they are the USS Razorback, USS Slater and the USS LST 325. The LST 325 is an operational WWII ship that still sails, the USS Slater is currently in drydock (1.3 million all in donations) and is expected out any day now. And the Razorback is being taken care of from what I understand

Darrin
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Jim
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« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2014, 10:40:37 AM »

Some boats have it better than others.....
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Lance Dean
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« Reply #4 on: June 13, 2014, 09:28:46 AM »

Strange days. I think the major concern is liability, along with money, control, and glory.  Smiley
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Fred Tannenbaum
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« Reply #5 on: June 15, 2014, 05:43:57 PM »

What situation brought up these concerns?
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mtnman
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« Reply #6 on: June 15, 2014, 08:24:05 PM »

This most likely refers to the Torsk. However the Torsk has nothing like what has happened at the Ling over the years. I have lost count of the number of volunteers that have been discouraged by the trustees at the Ling. It seems that these organizations just like to self-destruct.
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Fred Tannenbaum
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« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2014, 05:21:45 AM »

Thanks.

In the mid-1980s, the trustees of the Silversides decided the boat was "restored" and that there was no longer a need for a volunteer crew. Everyone kicked off without so much as a "thanks." Disgraceful.
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Darrin
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« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2014, 01:38:12 PM »

Fred,

This was brought up because of what is currently going on regarding the Torsk, it however is refering to the museums over the years that have told the volunteers that they are not needed. i.e freedom park (Bill Lee), Clamagore and the list I am sure goes on however I was also refering to the Ling finally being opened once more and their vols from what I remember were told not to come back after the storm that closed her down for well over a year, I am happy that the Ling is open again instead of rotting away sadly like the Clamagore whom was closed due to PPM

Darrin
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Fred Tannenbaum
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« Reply #9 on: June 17, 2014, 05:42:37 AM »

Thanks for the additional background.

Now my following of Clamagore's situation is that there never has been a serious effort by veterans and interested parties to create a volunteer crew to clean, restore and serve as guides. To the best of my knowledge, there have been discussions of field days and now the group coming forward to ask for one more year for them to raise money. Clamagore is too far gone and I do place the blame squarely at the museum management.  tickedoff

If the Torsk Volunteer Association is getting heat or indifference from that museum's management, then it is extremely regrettable. In my opinion, the TVA is a model every submarine museum should follow. But the impression I get of that museum's manager(s) is it's one of these know-it-alls wearing a Greek fisherman's cap who really doesn't. Why else would they spend thousands of dollars to keep those cheesy, historically inaccurate sharks teeth on the boat? What a waste of money.

That being said, I also have to give some props to Mark Allen at the Batfish for leading a stellar volunteer effort and Tom and Lesley at the Drum.
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Jim
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« Reply #10 on: June 17, 2014, 09:25:29 AM »

Mark Allen resigned from being volunteer coordinator (after 15 years) a year or so ago.  Cry
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Evil Tracey of Torsk
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« Reply #11 on: June 17, 2014, 11:11:27 AM »

Historic Ships in Baltimore not only loses free labor, they lose matching funds generated by grants for the volunteer hours.

So, financially, it's a double whammy on the Baltimore folks.
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Karen D.
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« Reply #12 on: June 18, 2014, 02:30:31 PM »

Our former CEO ran off most of the sub vets and some volunteers, but I've been busting my butt repairing relationships over the years. Now that we have a new CEO were are starting to repair those relationships with sub vets and I'm working with quit a few vols who love to be here. It's probably because I totally spoil them during working parties like the past few days...they get to sleep on the sub, and I feed them breakfast (coffee and donuts!) and lunch and let them use the theater to watch sub movies in the evening. Volunteers are always welcome here.  smitten

Karen
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Darrin
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« Reply #13 on: June 18, 2014, 10:09:35 PM »

TVA has had issues with BMM/Connie and now HSIB for years, the management wants to preserve the Connie and everything else is an afterthought or at least that is the way it felt for the years that I was able to come up and work on Torsk. The Taney had the USCG Chief's Assn volunteering for a number of years and I believe they are now only on there from time to time..

Another boat that was on the brink of being scrapped by the Navy was brought back from a blue torch was the Cavalla and from what I have heard recently they can't get volunteers anymore (after MMCM McMichaels retired a year or so ago) the volunteers have fallen off, I don't know why and honestly I should be worried about her because so many put so much into her repeatedly.
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Fred Tannenbaum
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« Reply #14 on: June 21, 2014, 07:38:16 AM »

I wish I lived much closer to Manitowoc. Karen gets it.

I'm preaching to the choir but here is an excerpt from "FAQ: So You Want A Historic Ship" by Dr. Normal Cary, former director of the Naval Historical Center. This should be required reading by anyone running a museum ship. Sadly, it seems few do.

http://hnsa.org/handbook/faq.htm

Another quote I read somewhere was that "Volunteers don't work for you: You work for your volunteers." Dr. Cary seems to add the same cautionary note.

"Volunteers vs. Paid Staff: This is an issue you and your management team have to face early and head-on. Experience in various profit-making and non-profit venues suggests that you cannot operate successfully over the long term solely with volunteers. Most historic ships have a mix of both. The degree to which you used volunteer and paid staff depends on a number of factors, to include:

1. How "sexy" the job is. You might get reenactors, tour guides, or some of your ship maintenance folks to volunteer; getting very many volunteers to pick up trash or clean up after events is problematical at best.
2. How critical the function is. What happens if the person is not there? The more critical the billet, the more essential it is to have some string on the person--i.e., a paycheck--to guarantee they are there. And don't confuse "visibility" with "essential". For example, it is doubtful that your highest executive position is more important to your ship than an effective manager of your gift shop.
3. Can you get the function performed in the way you want it for free?
Volunteers: All historic ships have some volunteers. Once you have determined where you are going to use them, you have to manage them intelligently. You should have a volunteer coordinator to manage your volunteer program. How do you manage volunteers? To find out more about this, it is recommended that you contact nearby large museums/other historic ships/other large non-profits to find out how they do it. There is also considerable literature on this subject, some of which can be obtained from the American Association of Museums, 1575 Eye Street, NW, Suite 400, Washington, DC 20005, E-Mail: bookstore@www.aam-us.org. One thing you have to remember: Volunteers are NOT free, contrary to popular opinion. It takes time and resources to manage them effectively and to retain them."

By the way, I'm going to be perfectly blunt: I think there are many cases where museum operators and boards get JEALOUS of volunteers instead of being proud of them.

« Last Edit: June 21, 2014, 08:29:21 AM by Fred Tannenbaum » Logged
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