Crosby Collection

Caption: At Isle La Motte, VT. June 28, 1910. Crosby Collection, Lake Champlain Maritime Museum.

Collection Summary

  • Dates: ca. 1775-1960
  • Size: seven albums of postcards and memorabilia and several additional boxes housing larger artifacts
  • Media: paper; silver;
  • Language: English
  • Subjects: Canal Era; Steamboat Era; Recreational Era; General Lake Champlain scenes
  • Related Publications: n/a
  • Access and Use: There are no restrictions on access and use for this collection. Parts of this Collection are digitally available for research on site.

Scope and Content

The Crosby Collection consists of several hundred historic postcards, photographs, booklets, and other Lake Champlain-related material showing various ports, buildings, and vessels relevant to the broad arc of Lake Champlain history. Among the postcards and memorabilia are scenes of the resorts which dotted the lake’s shores as well as scores of images of steamboats and ferries throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. Communities along Lake Champlain’s shorelines in Vermont and New York are represented, including those from Burlington, Orwell, Addison, Ferrisburgh, and Bridport, as well as several inland communities from Brandon, Middlebury, and Vergennes.

Of special note are the legers of the Orson Spear Shipyard from 1847-1882, which include documentation of the OJ Walker’s construction. The Collection also includes a silver-plated sugar bowl from the steamboat Vermont I and several keepsakes from its sister ship, Vermont II. The donors also included the deed for the Strong Mansion in Addison, dated 1775.

The majority of postcards from this collection have handwritten messages and postage stamps, providing more information about both the people who sent them to friends and family, and the dates and provenances of the postcards themselves. 

These materials were collected by Meg and Bub Crosby for more than thirty years and generously donated to the Museum in 2010.

Citation Recommendation

Crosby Collection, Lake Champlain Maritime Museum, Vergennes, VT.


Postcard; Lake Champlain; steamboats; ferries; resorts; historic sites; scenes;

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