Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum

Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum

Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum
5
Historic SitesScience MuseumsHistory Museums
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
1:00 PM - 4:00 PM
About
The Chatham Marconi Maritime Center's unique Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum traces the story of wireless telegraphy communications in Chatham from 1914 throughout the 20th Century, on the site of "The World's Greatest Coastal Station", Chatham Radio / WCC. Located in the historic 1914 Operating Building, it was once the busiest ship-to-shore radio receiving station on the US East Coast and a top secret US Navy installation during World War II. The museum offers informative and interactive exhibits, featuring the "Golden Age of Trans-Atlantic Ocean Liners" exhibit: For six decades, renowned ocean liners transported dignitaries, the rich and famous, generations of migrants, ordinary travelers and victorious armies. WCC kept them in contact with homes and businesses in the days before satellites. After visiting, please leave us a review. Thanks! Parents: register kids & grand-kids now for the Chatham Marconi’s fun "Summer STEM" day classes for grades K - 9 students during July & August.
Duration: 1-2 hours
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Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles232 reviews
Excellent
206
Very good
22
Average
2
Poor
1
Terrible
1

Jimmish
Marblehead, MA202 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2020 • Family
Booked our tickets online due to limited numbers. We are a family of 3 and another family of 3 joined us. Allowed entrance at allotted time, short film then a walk around the exhibits , with a guide who use to work at the center. Really interesting and informative, 2 exhibit rooms to visit with lots of hands on, plenty of hand sanitizer available.

Gotta keep these little institutions going, so next time you are on the cape, give this place a visit. You never know you might just learn something!
Written August 25, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Carol K
New York City, NY56 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2022
This is a sleeper gem of a museum. We have been in Chatham many times and didn't even know it was there. The guides are super knowledgeable about the amazing history of ship-to-shore communications displayed in the original wireless transmission building. The place is packed with interesting exhibits on shipwrecks, Morse Code, the efforts to break the German Engima code in WWII, the technology of communications, etc. Four of us spent over an hour exploring it and didn't see everything. There are things there to interest children as well as adults.

Be aware that the museum is opened only on a few days a week and check the operating ours closely to be sure you have enough time to see it all.
Written October 18, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

LP17
Boston16 contributions
2.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
I am confused as to how this has 5 stars on trip advisor. It's a small niche experience. It might be fabulous for some, but it definitely does not have wide appeal. I went with my husband and 10 year old son. The center itself is essentially one large room plus a 12 min video available off to the side. Exhibits were old equipment, most of which couldn't be touched due to age. My son found two interactive exihibits, one where he tried morse code and another where he tried decoding. They held his interest for about 5 minutes each. The 12 min video held his attention for about 5 minutes. We were in and out in about 20 minutes. We "hiked" the antenna path. I turned on my iWatch to log the steps/minutes. It took literally 3 minutes to walk to the top. I'd hoped for at least a great view, but there was a moderate view of a pond obscured by trees.
Written August 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
We're sorry that your experience did not meet your expectations. Your impression of our museum is essentially correct in that we focus on the history of maritime radio, including antique equipment that is for display only, or can only be operated by our trained volunteer guides. Most of our exhibits include interactive touchscreen displays with slideshows and videos for more information about each topic, but currently only a few displays are fully "hands-on" self-guided experiences. From your description, it appears that you did not interact with a guide who may have been able to make other exhibits more interesting to you and your son, and that is unfortunate. We hope that you will visit again in the future, and if you do please ask our guides to explore the exhibits with you and to demonstrate operable equipment.
Written August 31, 2022
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

TERRY W
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2022
This was an totally unexpected treat. I was aware that Marconi was famous for sending an early message across the Atlantic wirelessly and had never visited the museum in Chatham. The volenteers were better than great. One worked there for 18 years. Another was the daughter of a worker who helped maintain the antennas and actually grew up at the station. Another was a MIT grad who obviously loved the history and the science of how everything worked. My wife and I spent two hours there and barely touched on all the history. For anyone with an interest in history, RCA, WW II, the enigma machine and U boats , I would highly suggest a visit. Terry W
Written July 29, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

WLPYP
Yarmouth Port5 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020
A window on a little-known piece of history, scientific and military, beautifully displayed and thoroughly explained. The explanations are detailed enough to keep the interest of engineers and scientists and clear enough to enlighten those not so into technology. We were fortunate to be given a tour by Ron Farris, who had been a ship to shore radio operator in the building when the Marconi/RCA station was still in operation. His personal knowledge really made the whole thing come alive. Highly recommended.
Written October 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Doug Wilcox
Nashua, NH9 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
It is difficult to pick just one thing we loved in this museum. For one, the staff was willing to open this off season just for us, but beyond that, there are absolute wonders in store. In addition to learning about Marconi, we explored a ton of technology from the time, including an Enigma machine, and were even able to encode and decode messages to each other on Enigma replicas built with more modern tech.

This is a totally drool-worthy place to go.
Written July 23, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Susan M
3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2021
This museum was amazing. They have personal tours included with your membership that were so helpful. The technology was a little tricky to understand but with their help in explaining it, it all made sense. They are kind and courteous and incredibly knowleagable. I had recently read Thunderstruck by Erik Larson (which they sell in the gift shop) that talks about how Marconi's invention came about and the immediate difference it made in Ship to shore and ship to ship communication. It was amazing to actually see the equipment that is referred to in the book. The amount of actual equipment they have there is impressive. This museum is really fascinating and well worth the price of admission. Don't miss it.
Written October 3, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Nora H
Boston, MA3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
This is an outstanding museum and not to be missed while in the area. It is beautifully curated and staffed by knowledgable and personable staff. We went with a friend from Chicago and were captivated by the history and the legacy of the early days of this communication. It is a perfect excursion for a family or solo traveler. My husband and I intend to go back and take even more time with the exhibits and the totality of the experience. There is a brief and informative film right as you begin your sojourn. It is narrated by the late and dearly missed Walter Cronkite which is a perfect start to the exhibit.
Written August 14, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Katherine M
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2022
What a delightful museum. Staff were thrilled when we told them our last name was Marconi (no relation that we know of) and spent time explaining Marconi's role in inventing the wireless. The exhibits are interactive and easy to read, with a knowledgeable staff to answer questions. A fun experience for adults and children.
Written August 10, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Greg W
Port Washington, United States17 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Sep 2023 • Couples
This museum was extremely fun and interesting. It far exceeded our expectations. Unfortunately, we got there a little late and had to be kicked out so we didn't finish all the exhibits. Evenso, it was perfect in the sense that it's one floor, a set of related subjects (ocean going liners, the Enigma machine, the history of the radio and Marconi's life) so it can all be digested and enjoyed in a couple of hours. The stories and details about the ocean liners were so well presented with stories that just kept us captivated and wanting to read every last detail. Really fascinating stuff, with guides who obviously love the place. Since we couldn't finish our tour, we're definitely going back on our next trip to the Cape. Definitely stop in when you have a chance. Highly recommended.
Written September 29, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

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Marconi-RCA Wireless Museum - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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