What is The Current Status of The Glacier?

GLACIER is currently anchored in San Fransisco, CA at Suisan Bay on the Sacramento River. It is located near the town of Benicia, approximately 1-hour northeast of San Francisco. It can be seen from I-680, so next time you're nearby, give it a look.

Our crews accomplished significant work de-watering the ship and making her secure. Preparations were made to restore electrical hotel services in the near future. Detailed plans are being drafted and sub-contractors are supplying bids on parts of the restoration work that can not be handled by volunteers.

Currently, a crew of volunteers visits Glacier for one week a month, making repairs that are necessary for her to be transferred to a dry dock facility.

If you are interested in volunteer work aboard Glacier, please, fill out our online volunteer form and we will contact you with further information.

The Glacier rests among many other decommissioned ships at the MARAD facility in Suisun Bay in San Francisco, CA.
She is visited monthly by a crew of volunteers from all over the world. Volunteers are integral to the restoration of the Glacier.

View The Glacier Restoration Log


RESTORATION LOG #14 - 9 June 2002

  1. Plan to join and support the restoration crew aboard Glacier the week of July 7th, 2002. Go to the web site for more details. We are closing in on the movement date. This may be one of your last chances to earn special recognition for having worked aboard Glacier while she lies at MARAD. You will be sorry when you see what the others have earned!!

  2. We have concluded negotiations with MARAD and expect to sign the transfer documents shortly. Patrick Lennon Esq. of Southport, CT. is donating the Admiralty legal work. Thank you, Patrick.

  3. The discussions about berthing continue. We are moving closer to an agreement, but the multiplicity of authorities is, to say the least, confusing and cloudy. However, we believe that suddenly this will come to a close as well and we will be able to announce the winner of the GLACIER'S next port.

  4. Dr. Jerri Nielsen, author of ICE BOUND and famous cancer survivor from the South Pole Station has joined our Medical Advisory Board. Jerri is going to take a very active role supporting the Glacier Society. She will be donating her time and the revenue earned from major speeches to the Society. We have recently spent time together planning the ships medical restoration and building an alliance with one or more major medical schools. Our plans are BIG and THEY WILL BE ACCOMPLISHED! There is no possible way I can express to you her level of commitment to our mission. We are truly blessed to have this wonderful lady on our team.

  5. We are expanding our management organization and forming a tiered level of interlocking teams. The Management Board is entirely new. Its mission is to "manage the Business of the Society" by writing the business plans, supervising the specialty working units and driving the time line to accomplish the goals. Here is the membership of the Management Board. This is indeed an impressive group of men. We all are indeed grateful for their commitments. Capt. Will Sawyer, USN (Ret) of Boston, MA; Charles P. Stetson, USN (Ret.) of Fairfield, CT.; Steve Soler, Upper Arlington, Ohio; Rev. J. Perry Wooton, USN (Ret.) Eastchester, NY. and Capt. Martin McNair, USN (Ret.) Richmond, CA. We will publish more on this subject in our Newsletter.

  6. We have completed initial negotiations with insurance underwriters and have set forth a clear path for obtaining insurance for liability and ship movement. Further, we have agreed upon a path to gain insurance for operation of the ship at sea. We are waiting completing of the ships survey for issuance of insurance for the movement to the pier. This should all be completed this month.

  7. We have a Grant request pending before the selection Committee of Save America's Treasures. Visit www.nps.gov to learn more about this program. We could use letters of support from members of Congress. If any of you can assist in this regard please do so today!! The Committee is acting as you read this memo. Write to Treasures@nps.gov. We especially wish to thank Congressmen Shay's and Simmons, both of whom have sent letters of endorsement to the committee.


    Bernard G. Koether
    Glacier Society, Inc.

RESTORATION LOG #13 - 10 February 2002

  1. The year end fund raising suffered, as did other charities, from the 9-11 hangover. However, we did bring in considerable support and increased our number of donors. The most significant contributions were from two entities, one anonymous supplying a new Kohler Generator for the ICEBUCKET. The other contribution was from Peterson Power Systems. This firm has been loaning us a generator that supplies power to our work
    parties. It now is ours permanently!! These are very significant contributions with a value of over $30,000.

  2. We have completed preparations for the transfer of an "as new" Emergency Generator Room Complete with day tanks, fire extinguisher systems, and electrical switchgear. This operation will take place in March. This equipment will be installed in a new space to be designed by M. Rosenblatt & Sons to meet IMO and USCG regulations for emergency power aboard Inspected Vessels.

  3. Glacier Society participated in the Annual meeting of the United States Arctic Research Commission this past January, by invitation of its Chairman, George B. Newton. We invite you to visit www.uaa.alaska.edu/enri/arc_web/princip.htm. Here you may observe the
    synergies possible with the cooperation of the Glacier Society and many existing research programs. We were fortunate to meet all the Commissioners and the staff members including Dr. Rita Colwell the most distinguished leader of NSF and a strong proponent of increased research in the Arctic. The Society presented its vision of the restoration process and the planned scientific use of the vessel. We believe the future is promising indeed.

  4. Last week the Glacier Society toured England to lay the foundation for establishing formal links in the UK via becoming a UK entity registered with their Charity Board. This will enable UK resident Polar Explorers to join our team and participate in their local currency. We held numerous meeting, which included our Board members Alexandra Shackleton and Peter Fuchs.

  5. Glacier Society will participate in the Annual Winter Board Meeting of the HNSA, (Historic Naval Ship Assoc.) and then the Navy Memorial Dinner the first week of March. Meetings with our Congressional supporters, and MARAD will be perused to complete the transfer documents and prepare to move the ship to the pier at Mare Island. This will be followed by a two-week work period aboard ship. We will be ready to move shortly.

  6. The following skills are needed, and can be executed from home. Please help us find volunteers:

    a. Grant writers
    b. Authors for the newsletter & public relations
    c. Researchers to search the national Archives under our direction


    Bernard G. Koether
    Glacier Society, Inc.


1. Some may wonder why there has been no report since July. First, I was in Europe on business in August. While away my house was struck by lightening knocking out most electrical and computer systems. We were struggling to restore them when we were hit with Sept 11. Our membership recruiting and fund raising has suffered, as the Nation's attention focused on the immediate priority. All systems are back on line and we are picking up steam again.

2. Work aboard ship continued with only slight interruption. We have a big operation planned to shift significant equipment aboard Glacier as soon as MARAD is ready. We need a push from our volunteers because we are in the home stretch, just eleven months to our departure date from MARAD.

3. Last week we received from MARAD the first draft of our "closing" documents. These are the contracts by which we execute the removal and assume operational command of Glacier. We expect to move at the end of next summer. Preparations are underway for a berth at Mare Island.

4. We have formed a Medical Committee. This group is composed of: Dr. David O. Haugland Col. USA (Ret.), Mr. John Fox, and Dr. Sandra Bogdon, DDS. These folks met at our offices and formed a plan to set the mission for a Medical Facility aboard Glacier and then to raise the funds to install all new equipment. Dr. Haugland served aboard Glacier for two years. He is fully retired and committed to this project. Dr. Bogdon is still practicing. Mr. Fox has experience in establishing charity medical facilities overseas. We encourage anyone who is especially interested in this effort to call or write the office and we will involve you with the effort.

5. The Glacier Society is now a full member of The Historic Naval Ship Association. This is an exciting step; we are now recognized as operating a museum. The Icebucket has been on display all summer along the Connecticut Coast. She is now laid up for winter and will be receiving new gear in anticipation of next year's operations.

6. We are saddened to inform you of the passing of Captain Ed Grant USN (Ret.). He was skipper of Glacier after my cruise. During the past two years I and others shared the restoration work with Ed. He was an inspiration to all and will be missed but not forgotten. The new web site now under preparation will feature stories and photos of Capt. Grant in action.

7. We request a show of hands. How many of you will volunteer for one, two, three or more weeks continuous service when we can provide room and board on or nearby Glacier? The response is critical to our planning. Please give it serious thought. We now have a mailing list of nearly 7,000. That means most of you have not made a financial or physical commitment as yet, NOW IS THE TIME FOR ACTION. Please make a year end gift today....right now before you forget. The Society, its volunteers and your shipmates need your support today! Everyone who sends in $100.00 in December will receive a new Video produced by volunteers from CBS TV about our project. Corporations can use this for employee motivation! ACT now, it lists all volunteers & corporate sponsors.

Ben Koether




©2000 The Glacier Society