The Mariners' Museum

Civil War Lecture Series: “Why Composite Artifacts are Tricky to Conserve”

The Mariners' Museum & Park
100 Museum Drive
Newport News, VA 23606
United States 100 Museum Drive Newport News 23606


  • Members: $Free
  • Non-Members: $Free with museum admission

Despite the USS Monitor being an iron ship there was a large quantity of organic material recovered during excavations; organic material such as: wood, rope, leather and rubber. Individually the treatment of these materials is reasonably straightforward. When an artifact is made up of multiple materials that cannot be separated, usually a combination of metals and organics, conservation treatment of these composite artifacts becomes more complicated. This presentation will discuss research being conducted in the USS Monitor Conservation laboratory on the treatment of composite artifacts.