NEWPORT NEWS, Va. - December 31st, 1862 is the day the USS Monitor sunk after less than a year in the Northern fleet during the Civil War.
It's best known for its epic ironclad fight against the CSS Virginia in the Battle of Hampton Roads in the beginning of March.
Although both the North and South believe they won that battle, the USS Monitor's ability to compete with the Southern fleet was a huge morale boost for the North.
The Mariners' Museum in Newport News works to conserve the remains of the ship. They have over 200 tons of artifacts either on display or working to be conserved in the museum's lab.