Press Releases

Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein and Congresswoman Nanette Diaz Barragán (both D-Calif.) have introduced the Battleship Iowa National Museum of the Surface Navy Act. The bill would designate the USS Battleship Iowa Museum, located in the Port of Los Angeles, as the National Museum of the Surface Navy. 

            “The USS Iowa has a storied history. She was active in World War II and the Korean War, and later supported NATO in the 1980s after she was recommissioned. She also famously carried President Roosevelt to meet with Churchill and Stalin in 1943,” said Senator Feinstein. “Her life as a museum in the Port of Los Angeles has taught millions of Americans the importance of our surface navy. I’m proud to again partner with Rep. Barragán to introduce a bill designating the USS Iowa as the National Museum of the Surface Navy.” 

            “This bill honors the men and women who have served – and continue to serve – in the surface forces of the United States by designating this museum as a monument to their sacrifice,” said Congresswoman Barragán. “In decades past, the Iowa defended our nation. Today, it serves our community here in San Pedro by educating the next generation. The U.S.S. Iowa is now not only a hallmark of California’s 44th Congressional District, but also a living monument to the surface forces of the U.S. Navy.”

            “In 1775, Congress founded our Navy by commissioning a handful of surface ships,” said retired Rear Admiral Mike Shatynski, chairman of the board for the museum. “For 244 years, our country’s Surface Navy has protected free trade on the seas, provided humanitarian assistance, and promoted international relations. I am grateful to Congresswoman Barragan and Senator Feinstein that we will be able to recognize the millions of Surface Navy sailors and their families for their service to our country and the world.” 

            In 2006, Feinstein called on the Navy to transfer the USS Iowa to California so she could be turned into a floating museum. The Battleship Iowa Museum opened in 2012 and is operated by the nonprofit Pacific Battleship Center. The museum welcomes millions of visitors every year.

            Specifically, the legislation would:

  • Designate the Battleship Iowa Museum, located at the port of Los Angeles and managed by the Pacific Battleship Center, as the “National Museum of the Surface Navy.”
  • Define the purpose of the museum as supporting the United States Surface Navy community, as a platform for education, community and veterans programs and to preserve artifacts, documents and history collected by the museum.