For those who attended last November’s grand mixer, in partnership with the Japan Business Association, a glimpse of Port of Los Angeles history and how vital that entire area is to the business community was provided. The Los Angeles Maritime Museum, host of the event, is an active and valued member of the Torrance Area Chamber of Commerce.

The Los Angeles Maritime Museum located at 600 Sampson Way, Berth 84, in San Pedro provides guests the opportunity to discover the history of the harbor, enjoy a front-row view of busy ship traffic, and explore all that the museum has to offer. The museum has an exhibit that chronicles the once thriving San Pedro fishing industry, including a special display, Taminaru, A Day in the Life of a Japanese American Fishing Village, models of merchant ships and a fully operational ham radio station. Additionally, the museum operates the tugboat, Angels Gate, which provides narrated tours for museum members. Other than the removal of her machine guns and military hardware, Angels Gate appears as she did when she first launched.

Tomorrow, the museum is proud to unveil a special preview of a new exhibit, “USS Los Angeles SSN-688”, a nuclear attack submarine. The USS Los Angeles represented the latest in technology when launched in 1974 and spent over 30 years patrolling the Pacific before being decommissioned in January 2010 in the Port of Los Angeles, Los Angeles, California her namesake city. “Guests will have the opportunity to view recreations of the berthing and galley areas with original artifacts preserved from the USS Los Angeles, learn about life in the ‘Silent Service’ and enjoy an interactive timeline, videos and much more,” exclaimed Marifrances Trivelli, executive director.

Having visited the museum several times, I am continually amazed with the ‘something new’ I learn from each excursion. The exhibit of ship models is always of interest to me. On this visit, Trivelli spent some time explaining to me the model of the S.S. Catalina, “The S.S. Catalina was built expressly for the Catalina Island route at the Los Angeles Shipbuilding and Drydock company in 1924. Known as the ‘Great White Steamer’, it was the largest of its fleet carrying 1,950 passengers. The Catalina ran from the Island and back until 1976, except during World War II when she transported troops to San Francisco.”

As we continued up a long ramp viewing several other ship models, Trivelli highlighted the interactive children’s area. This hands-on area also serves as the best view of the Los Angeles Harbor. As we looked out a large window, I noticed several cargo ships at dock with a flurry of activity on each. As with all businesses I visit for this column, I am in awe of the history of each and what an impact each makes on our communities. The Los Angeles Maritime Museum is no different. If you haven’t had the opportunity, please consider visiting. The museum is open year-round and provides tours for veterans, civic groups, seniors and students. Information can be obtained by calling (310) 548-7618 or by visiting    

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