Set Sail to Hidden Art Deco on Ellis Island

Set Sail to Hidden Art Deco on Ellis Island


When: Sunday, July 29, From 12:45 to 4:15 p.m.

Where: Exact Meeting Location to be announced to those who
Where: register the week prior to the event.


About the Event:

Join ADSNY for a once-in-a-lifetime guided tour of an important Art Deco gem that is closed to the public: the 1936 Ellis Island Ferry House. 

On this summer afternoon we will set sail to Ellis Island––enjoying scenic views along the way, including southern Manhattan and the Statue of Liberty––and explore the history, architecture, restoration, and preservation of the treasured buildings that played a vital role in the United State’s immigration story.

While more than three million people visit Ellis Island annually, very few are ever invited inside the Art Deco Ferry House, which was built in 1936 by the Public Buildings Branch of the Procurement Division for the Immigration Service of the Department of Labor. This private tour is your rare opportunity to gain exclusive access to this unique Art Deco building and learn of its complex history from the historians, architects, and preservationist closest to the restoration project.

In 1954, when Ellis Island was largely abandoned, this Art Deco treasure began to suffer and slipped into decay. After over 50 years of neglect, the buildings of Ellis Island underwent a full restoration in 2007. But, in 2012, the island suffered severe damage inflicted by Hurricane Sandy. Architects and preservationists were not easily deterred and started the restoration project again. After many years of dedicated restoration efforts, the 1936 Art Deco Ferry House has been lovingly restored and is opening its doors just for us. 

In addition to seeing the island’s Art Deco treasure, attendees will see the wonderful terra-cotta ornamentation throughout the island, learn about the progress to open other important structures, and wind through the Registry Room, where twelve million immigrants passed through from 1900–1954.

About the Guides:

We will be led by award-winning author and tour guide Kevin C. Fitzpatrick, who has written and edited seven books about New York City history. His most recent publications are World War One New York: A Guide to the City’s Enduring Ties to the Great War (2017), the Governors Island Explorer’s Guide (2016), and the Algonquin Round Table New York: A Historical Guide (2015). Fitzpatrick appears on the Travel Channel’s program Mysteries at the Museum, and has spoken at the New-York Historical Society, New York Transit Museum, and many other venues.

We will also be joined by representatives from the organization responsible for the preservation and restoration project who will give us the inside scoop on the immense undertaking.

Following our behind-the-scenes adventure, we will sail back to Manhattan and disembark in Battery Park. Attendees are invited to join us for for cocktails and conversation at Pier A, the 1886 New York City landmark, where those who wish to stay can partake in happy hour at the Commissioner’s Bar, overlooking the harbor. Cocktails are not included in registration.



Ticket price includes round-trip boat tickets, a private guided group tour, and admission to the Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration.

There is a $3.00 processing fee for each ticket to this event. Once you complete the registration form below and press the “Add to Cart” button, you will see a $3.00 per ticket processing fee. This processing fee is labeled “Shipping.”

Please note: ADSNY does not mail event tickets. When you register, your name(s) and contact information are added to the event’s list of attendees. The PayPal confirmation that you receive, via email, after your payment is completed is the confirmation of your registration for the event.

Members: $125.00
Non-Members: $150.00

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All ticket sales are final. Sorry, there are no refunds or exchanges.
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