Visitors enjoying the Delaware River through Independence Seaport Museum’s Paddle Penn’s Landing boat rental program. Photo courtesy of Independence Seaport Museum.
Founded in 1960 as the Philadelphia Maritime Museum, Independence Seaport Museum (ISP) is a repository of art, artifacts, and archival materials documenting the diverse maritime history of the Greater Delaware Valley, and the history of major urban ports of the Delaware River. The museum deepens the appreciation, understanding, and experience of the Philadelphia region's waterways through an array of artistic and historical exhibitions. ISP also houses one of the largest collections of maritime art and artifacts in the country, and it operates the National Historic Landmark ships Cruiser Olympia and Submarine Becuna. In 2017, ISP received a Center Discovery grant to investigate the potential of a contemporary art-making program to increase audience engagement and deepen the public’s understanding of the region’s waterways.