County: Bergen County
The USS Ling is a U.S. Navy Balao class submarine and one of five built near the end of World War II still surviving. Launched in 1943 from the Cramp Shipbuilding Company of Philadelphia, it came into service in 1945. With the end of World War II, it was decommissioned a few months later and became part of the Atlantic Reserve Fleet until 1960. It was then used as a training submarine at the Brooklyn Navy Yard until 1971.
In 1972, the USS Ling was transferred to the Submarine Memorial Association, a non-profit established to save it from being sold as scrap and to interpret its historical significance. The owner of The Bergen Record, a newspaper headquartered in Hackensack, was instrumental in the transfer of the USS Ling to the Submarine Memorial Association and the Ling was towed to a riverbank site in proximity to the newspaper’s headquarters. Once in Hackensack, the submarine was operated as a museum, and listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places.
In 2012, Hurricane Sandy caused severe flooding along the banks of the Hackensack River, severely damaging the museum. This, combined with silt buildup on the River, resulted in full closure of the museum and submarine by 2016, and deferred maintenance. In 2018 an inspection found that the USS Ling had sprung a leak which caused significant water damage.
The submarine requires a full overhaul with significant costs. As one of only five remaining submarines of its class, and the only one in New Jersey, Preservation New Jersey calls attention to the need for the stabilization and restoration of the submarine for its ability to connect future generations to military history of the 20th century.
The New Jersey Naval Museum