The USS Olympia is the oldest extant steel-hulled warship in the world. Constructed as part of a congressionally mandated program to build a modern fleet prior to the turn of the 19th century, she became famous as Adm. George Dewey's flagship at the Battle of Manila Bay. Today she is part of a naval shrine at Penn's Landing in Philadelphia.
This is a flesh-and-steel history of a pivotal warship that straddled the eras of commerce raiding and battle fleet confrontation in naval warfare. From her conceptual beginnings on drawing boards in Washington to the battle to protect her against age, scrapping, and the advent of big-gun battleships, this landmark study celebrates one of America's classic historic ships.