The Mary Murray was a 300 foot long Staten Island ferry ship built in 1937. The boat was declared surplus and in 1975 was sold at auction to George Searle. His plan was to turn her into a restaurant or a museum. The boat (named for Revolutionary war hero) was most likely going to be scrapped and the former US MArine didn’t want to see it happen. He had her docked in the Raritan River, where he and his family live below the shadow of exit 9 on the NJ Turnpike. For 6 years it remained in the middle of the river until he was forced by the state to moor her in what became known as No-Name Creek, a small tributary that runs into the river.
The ship soon fell into severe decay and by 1999 the state was concerned about the environmental impact of the mary Murray, possibly leaking oil, gas and other chemicals into the river. He signed an agreement with the state that would last 7 years, giving him more time to do something with the ship. The deal expired in 2006 and in 2007 the state was pushing Searle to do something with hulking wreck.
After two and a half decades of sitting lifeless and derelict, the ship was no longer in any condition to be towed away. Easily visible from the NJ Turnpike several hundred yards to the west it had became a local icon. An eyesore to many, it represented a piece of history to others. By now there was not much that one could do with her except cut her up for scrap metal.
According to this article in March 2008, the Mary Murray was to be dismantled. From other published reports, it has been cut up for scrap. Sitting next to the Mary Murray is a pleasure boat that alledgedly once belonged to the Shah of Iran.
Click here for a view of the MM from a satellite. You can see the MM in the upper right corner and the Shah of Iran boat next to it.