Join Us
Opening Reception
Friday, May 24
5:00 to 7:00 pm
Main Street Gallery, 40 E. Main Street
Free, donations welcome
Sponsored by
with grant support from Margaret E. Burnham Charitable Trust
Photo Archives News
New Towns Adopted!
Thanks to a number of generous supporters we have a whole slew of "new" Eastern Illustrating negatives added to our online database! The "adopt-a-town" program was developed to raise the necessary funds to purchase Eastern Illustrating negatives that had escaped from the collection decades ago. Over the last several months  Robbinston & Calais were adopted by Corthell Family,  Foster's Point by Deborah Barber,  Goodwin Mills by Sue McClintock, York Village by Mary Mosier, Freeport by Linda Bean, Brunswick by Jane Q. Calderwood and Guilford, CT by Tyson Streeter. We are so appreciative of the generosity of these individuals and now these photos can be viewed, researched, published and enjoyed by the world! There are still more towns to go. Learn about the "Adopt-a-town" program and see what's still available here. Every bit helps!
M.C. Depot Belfast, ME LB2018.12.123168
Waterfront Robbinston, ME LB2010.8.122235
So. Freeport Yacht Basin 
So. Freeport, ME
M.C.R.R. Train
Farmington, ME LB2018.12.123177
Where in the World?
In 1713, Great Britain claimed a rocky promontory on the European side of the Strait of Gibraltar, an eight mile wide naval choke point between Europe and Africa leading into the Mediterranean Sea.  Over half the world's seaborne trade passes through the Strait, making a militarily and economically strategic geographic area. 
British Ships at Gibraltar James E. Buttersworth, signed  oil on board. 
Bequest of Dan and Grace Freeman, #1979.79.15.1
Gibraltar, A Closer Look:
In this painting by British artist James E. Buttersworth, a three-decked naval ship of the line flying the red signal of an Admiral of the Red sails past five vessels lying at anchor under the protection of the Rock of Gibraltar, waiting out the storm.  We see the western side of the limestone ridge known as the "Rock".  The seaborne eastern and southern precipices of the Rock of Gibraltar prevent easy access to the land, but the western face eventually slopes down to the sea.  On this gentler slope, the British fortified a town and built a naval dockyard.  The powerful batteries of the fortification protected any attack from the sea.  Lightning seems to strike the low, flat isthmus that connects the northern side of the Rock of Gibraltar with mainland Spain and marks the northern boundary of Great Britain's territory. 
Children's Explorer Camps
  Haul on the bowline, our bully ship's a rolling
Haul on the bowline, the bowline Haul! ♫ 

Sing shanties, furl the sails of Yard-in-the-Yard, build paper ships, tie sailors' knots, explore PMM's exhibits, and end the week with a pirate treasure hunt. Does your child enjoy discovering new things? This year's new Children's Explorer Camps will be full of hands-on fun including exciting games, crafts, and activities. Campers will step back in time to discover what life was like on shore and in Maine maritime communities in the 19th century. We'll also discover more about the fish that Maine fishermen caught and continue to catch and the boats and ships built in Penobscot Bay. Whether your child is interested in history or science or has a strong sense of curiosity, this camp is for them! Space is limited, register today.

Can't wait for camp to start? Make your own origami boat at home. It floats! 
PMM on the Road
HENRY BUCK of Searsport, Phineas Pendleton, Master. Leaving Venice, 1857. Giovanni Luzro. Watercolor.  Gift of the Estate of James P. Nichols, #1953.38.
Join Curator Cipperly Good in New Bedford this May.  Focusing on the paintings in our Where in the World? exhibit, she will be presenting a talk, "Port Paintings: Snapshots of Sea Port Commerce" at the North American Society of Oceanic History (NASOH) conference on Thursday, May 16. The conference theme is Connecting the Global and Local: The Sea and Maritime Cities. The three-day conference, from May 16-18, identifies and explores the dynamic social, cultural, environmental, economic and physical spaces that connects city and sea.  

The conference committee agreed with Cipperly's proposal that port paintings exemplify the interplay between the import/export economy of a port city and the global reach those cities have on communities across the globe. On the coast of Maine, local nineteenth century merchant marine families claimed they were more likely to see their neighbors in Hong Kong than back home.  These Maine families on their Maine-built ships rarely returned to their homeports. Unloading and loading freight could take weeks, providing plenty of time for the captain to commission a port painter to create a portrait of the ship, the means of his livelihood and a source of pride. These artists often pre-painted the backgrounds with local geographical landmarks and cityscapes, creating a snapshot of the port city in time.  

To see the full list of sessions, an exact time for Cipperly's talk, and registration information, visit
Collections News
Explore Archives of Maine's Quintessential Industries

Thanks to a grant from the Maine Historical Records Advisory Board (MHRAB), Penobscot Marine Museum has rehoused and cataloged four collections documenting quintessential nineteenth and twentieth century Maine industries. The collections document the shipping of Maine's natural resources, the use of Maine built ships in the global trading routes, and the evolution of Maine's lobster boats.  

The Gillchrest Collection consists of over 3,000 family letters, ship documents, and business correspondence of Captain Levi Gillchrest, a Thomaston, Maine merchant mariner, spanning from 1826 to 1877, involving the shipping of Maine lime and timber around the globe. The Gillchrest Collection is a gift of Renny and Julie Stackpole. The Richard Lunt Collection documents the lobster boat builders in Mt Desert and Jonesport/Beals, from 1880-1989, and explores the regional origins and early evolution of the Maine lobster boat that led to the design differences between the Jonesporter, Mount Desert Island, and Casco Bay lobster boats of today. The Richard Lunt Collections is a gift of Richard Lunt. The Whitcomb, Haynes & Whitney Business Records provide insight into the day to day business of an Ellsworth, Maine lumber and shipping business from 1873-1929. The Whitcomb, Haynes, & Whitney Business Records are a gift from Marc S. Blanchette. The Samuel F. Manning Illustration Collection archives the illustrations of Camden, Maine illustrator Samuel F. Manning, from 1970 to 2017, on subjects ranging from ship and boat building, to coastal and deep sea shipping, to Maine town histories. The Samuel F. Manning Illustration Collection is a gift of Samuel F. Manning.

To access these collections, and the rest of the maritime history and genealogical archival records of the Penobscot Marine Museum, please contact Cipperly Good, Curator/Collections Manager at or 207-548-2529x212.
2019 Exhibits
Open May 25 to October 20 
Sponsored by
 with grant support from Margaret E. Burnham Charitable Trust
Sponsored by
 with grant support from Margaret E. Burnham Charitable Trust
Sponsored by
Sponsored by Sally Savage

Scaling Up:
The Canoa da Picada Plan Goes Full-Size

Speaker: Object-Based Learning
Thursday, May 23 at 6:00 pm
Old Vestry, 2 Church Street
$5 for members, $8 for non-members, free for teachers

What can you learn from a ship's painting, a 19th-century logbook, or a souvenir from China? How can these objects be used to teach? In this interactive presentation, PMM staff will discuss the benefits of object-based learning. Guidelines will be provided for using Museum artifacts as primary sources in the classroom and as starting points for storytelling.
Opening Reception
Friday, May 24, 5:00 to 7:00 pm
Main Street Gallery, 40 E. Main Street
Free, donations welcome
Speaker: Maine In The China Trade
Thursday, May 30 at 6:00 pm
Old Vestry, 2 Church Street
$5 for members, $8 for non-members

Drugs, armed conflict, and free trade. Sound familiar? The First Opium War of the early 1840s, with British and Chinese fighting over the opium trade and Chinese sovereignty, opened up Chinese ports to the world. Maine's merchant mariners aboard Maine-built ships soon thereafter entered the Chinese import and export trade. The trade aboard Maine-built ships lasted into the turn of the 20th Century. In the meantime, Maine sea captains and their families brought back souvenirs, stories, and an economic understanding of China.
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