Main Hall

From Boat to Table
Using objects, text, photographs, audio, and video, this interactive exhibit allows visitors to learn about all aspects of the seafood industry. Each section of the exhibit includes a look at changes over time with historical artifacts that speak to “Back when”.

Gearing Up presents the shoreside work involved in getting a vessel ready for fishing from vessel construction and the design and manufacture of nets and dredges to taking on fuel, ice, and provisions. Visitors can try mending a section of net and develop a grub list – a shopping list to feed their crew.

At Sea explores daily life aboard a fishing vessel including all aspects of the work, the use of technology for navigation and communication, and the importance of safety, as well as the experience of cooking, eating, and sleeping at sea. A wheelhouse creates a sense of shipboard life. A dress up area allows visitors to don fisherman’s clothing.

Sustaining the Resource provides an overview of industry efforts to ensure a healthy and plentiful resource including cooperative research which combines skills and knowledge of fishermen and scientists, advancements in technology, and gear modifications to allow for greater selectivity and reduced by-catch.

Landing the Catch follows the seafood from fish hold to auction, to processing plant, and finally to market. A seafood recipe exchange collects and disseminates community recipes. Settlement sheets from the 1960s and today illustrate changing economics.

The Fish News allows visitors to listen a broadcast by local radio personality Bill Brennan.  For over 20 years, Fish News was a vital link between sea and shore.  Listen to excerpts from a 1983 broadcast and browse our library of commercial fishing books and current and back issues of industry trade papers.


Commercial Fishermen of New England
February 14 – April 7, 2019

A series of charcoal portraits by regional artist Suzanne Starr, that depicts some of the commercial fishermen working local waters today. Whether chasing ground fish, squid, lobsters or scallops, most continue the work of their fathers and grandfathers. As a series, these images offer a richer portrait of the fishing community than any individual portrait might.

Suzanne is a prize winning artist who has shown in Local, State, Regional and National Art Exhibitions. Her works are owned by collectors in Connecticut and New York. Suzanne is an Elected Artist member of The American Artists Professional League, The Connecticut Women Artists Organization, and The Mystic Museum of Art. She is an Associate Member of The Connecticut Academy of Fine Arts. Recently retired from her teaching career in the North Stonington public school system, she now pursues her art on a full time basis.