The Museum's holdings include ship models, paintings, prints, flags, uniforms, swords, firearms, medals, sculptures, manuscripts, rare books, photographs, ship instruments and gear, and a wide variety of personal memorabilia. Several special collections are particularly noteworthy: The Beverley R. Robinson Collection's 6000 prints reflect the naval history of Europe and the New World from 1514 through World War II.
The United States Navy Trophy Flag Collection, begun by an Act of Congress in 1814 and given to the care of the Naval Academy in 1849, now totals more than 600 historic American and captured foreign flags. Included are the famous "Don't Give Up the Ship" battle flag flown at the Battle of Lake Erie, the first American ensign flown in Japan (1853), and flags and banners which have been to the moon. The flags are augmented by a collection of books on the subject, among which are many rare and valuable hand-illustrated editions.
Another valuable historical reference is the Malcolm Storer Naval Medals Collection, which was donated in 1936. It is composed of 1,210 commemorative coin-medals dating from 254 BC to 1936. The collection was gathered from thirty countries.
Other significant groups of objects and documentary materials related to John Paul Jones, Edward Preble, Stephen Decatur, Oliver H. Perry, Matthew C. Perry, David G. Farragut, Chester W. Nimitz, William F. Halsey, and other significant personages of our past. A number of valuable naval documents acquired from the Rosenbach, Christian A. Zabriskie, and John L. Senior Collections are available for research.