Traveling Review: Woods Hole Oceanic Institute

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Everyone has seen young Leonardo Dicaprio and Kate Winslet as star crossed lovers who meet and defy cultural norms to pursue a romance with one another on the ill fated “Titanic” in the movie of the same name about the same topic.

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What is not so common knowledge is man who led the expedition to find her, Mr. Robert Ballard, was based at Woods Hole, Rhode Island. Under the WHOI banner, Ballard also found the remains of US Navy submarines Thresher and Scorpion, the German Battleship Bismarck, the USS Yorktown and the PT boat JFK served on during World War II.

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The Woods Hole Oceanic Institute Museum occupies a quaint little building in the town of the same name, yet bears quite a bit of information about ocean exploration, the submersibles and underwater drones under their purview,  as well as exhibits about the Arctic and Antarctic, a hands on display of the original Alvin cockpit, and immensely detailed models of the Titanic as it lies on the sea floor today. 

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The museum also sports at least two touchscreen monitors bearing information  and videos about the Alvin Submersible and the other ships and drones comprising the research fleet. Coupled with many of the technology exhibits are displays of sea life such as a diorama of a hydrothermal vent habitat. The museum does a good job of maintaining exhibits interesting to both adults and children. We easily could have spent hours within had we more time.

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Other kudos: Photography was allowed inside, entrance was free, and donations encouraged.

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Traveling Review: Woods Hole Oceanic Institute

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