Navy Seabee Foundation


From its humble origins as a warehouse for Seabee memorabilia to the installation of major new exhibits and the restoration of artifacts, the museum preserves the Seabee legacy and promotes the Seabee story to the public. 

Founding the Museum

Seabees returning from the Pacific Theater left vast quantities of memorabilia in Port Hueneme. By 1946, the building known as Theater C was overflowing with abandoned war souvenirs. In October 1946, Theater C became the first official Seabee museum and the second official U.S. Navy Museum. It was made possible only through the volunteer energy and spirit of Seabee veterans.

Museum Expansion

Over the next five decades, the museum was moved, rebuilt, and expanded repeatedly to keep up with the growing collection. In the 1960s, the “Father of the Seabees,” Admiral Ben Moreell, donated his personal collection to the museum along with a new wing in which to display it. In 2011, the museum moved into a new state-of-the-art building that was constructed to better preserve the Seabee legacy and to improve the visitor experience. This $12 million building was funded by the CEC/Seabee Historical Foundation  through gifts from Seabee veterans, their families, corporations, foundations, and friends of the Seabee legacy.

Building Exhibits

The museum’s new building, along with its contemporary, interactive exhibits and the professional museum staff, have propelled the museum’s mission forward. It is now a destination for tourists eager to better understand the Seabees’ role in U.S. history and for veterans proud of their contribution to history. The museum is a resounding success as evidenced by the overwhelmingly positive visitor reviews. However, much remains to be done to improve and expand the museum exhibits and promote its message to the public.


Watch our video for an overview of the new exhibits that will honor 75 years of Seabee service, showcase their accomplishments, and excite young people about engineering and building.


The Seabees and Civil Engineer Corps have a rich tradition of protecting America’s freedom and building a better global community. Their contributions highlight the importance of science, engineering, and creative problem solving in American history as well as teamwork and ingenuity. 

Your gift will help ensure that the Seabee contribution continues to be recognized in our nation’s history and that future generations will be inspired to follow in their footsteps. Patriotism. Ingenuity. Hard work. Help us perpetuate these enduring values today.