May 05, 2024

Museum Review - USS Cod

While on a recent trip to Ohio, The Fatherly One got a chance to visit USS Cod in Cleveland, unique among the country's museum submarines in having been extremely minimally modified, and was kind enough to write a review.

Cod pierside1

USS Cod – SS-224, WW II Fleet Submarine USS COD Submarine Memorial North Coast Harbor Cleveland, OH

The Cod is the only WW II Gato class fleet submarine in its original wartime configuration. No stairways and/or doors have been cut in her pressure hull. Access for the tour is via the escape trunk which deposits you in the forward torpedo room. From there the tour heads to the stern. On the outside, there are dents from depth-charging and bullet holes from a strafing run.

The torpedo room

The boat is clean and orderly with each compartment set up as it would have looked 80 years ago. Each major area has a short audio tour done by original crew members! Easily activated with the press of a well-marked button, these are helpful. These audio tours are geared to life on a sub and not the technology/hardware found on a sub. Unfortunately, the day we toured the boat there were no ex-Navy personal present as docents, which left us with a few questions unanswered.

Admission is $15 for adults, $13 for seniors and vets with ID, $9 for youth (K-12). The boat can be walked from bow to stern in an hour or so. It is worth the time to see the only remaining fully operational WW II fleet boat in existence.

The galley
Bean: I would very much like to see Cod on the basis of this. It appears that glass is minimal (my biggest annoyance on submarines besides Nautilus), they haven't touched the structure (which is something that also bothers me), and they've used an audio tour system similar to that aboard Albacore, which I really liked and think more ships should make use of.

1 Photos courtesy of The Fatherly One.


  1. May 05, 2024Mike Kozlowski said...

    ...It's WONDERFUL to see COD! I grew up in Northern Ohio, and it was always a treat to see her. I go back far enough that I remember when she was an active USNR training ship and done up in black - as black as midnight in a coal mine.

    A year or so back she was towed to Erie PA for drydocking and genera cleanup - she's in great shape and will be around for a long time to come. Also, one of her engines is fully operational and started up IIRC once a month.

  2. May 06, 2024AlanL said...

    Unfortunately, the day we toured the boat there were no ex-Navy personal present as docents

    Definitely unfortunate. On my visit to USS Constitution circa 2000 I spoke to a crewman who had actually been aboard - and aloft - on one of her rare & brief trips to sea. As a lifelong Patrick O'Brian fan it was a huge thrill for me to speak to an actual topman on an actual sailing warship.

  3. May 06, 2024Anonymous said...

    The Fatherly One got a chance to visit USS Cod in Cleveland, unique among the country's submarines in occasionally going to sea

    So the Ohios don't go to sea?

  4. May 06, 2024bean said...

    So the Ohios don’t go to sea?

    There was a word missing. Now there is not.

  5. May 06, 2024Tom Chambers said...

    The Cod is indeed in great shape and I also recommend the tour. But she is not quite 'fully operational.' There are no screws. If I understand correctly, removal of the screws was a USN requirement for her transfer to private ownership as a museum ship.

    I last toured the Cod some 20 years ago and remember asking the ticket attendant (ex-Navy I think) whether the boat could still dive. He replied, "Diving is easy. Surfacing could be difficult."

  6. May 07, 2024Ski206 said...


    You might want to update this as Cod’s screws aren’t on her shafts and as such she can’t move under her own power.

  7. May 07, 2024bean said...

    Fixed now. I had misremembered, and put this together quickly because I had a meetup to run.

  8. May 19, 2024DaveOTN said...

    My dad served as a submariner from 68-72, mostly on nukes, but he had one tour on a diesel boat as well. It was always a treat to visit museum subs with him and hear his "supplements " to the official tours.

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