Key to Liberty exhibit space with a boat model on display on the left and a painting of a shipwreck on the right


With over ten exhibition buildings on campus, as well as our waterfront, historic boats, and more, our exhibits explore key parts of Lake Champlain maritime history. Exhibits are open to visit in-person seasonally from May to October. Want to explore exhibits online? Visit our Digital Exhibits library.

Exhibits opening on May 18:

Small watercraft center with boats on the walls
Hazelett Small Watercraft Center

Explore the history of small human-powered watercraft on Lake Champlain, featuring the towering Storm King ice yacht.

Model boat in an exhibit
Key to Liberty: The American Revolution in the Champlain Valley

Discover how a naval battle on Lake Champlain changed the outcome of the Revolutionary War.

Steam to Gasoline

Step inside our collection of outboard motors and other boating objects documenting the history of how boating technology has moved from steam to gasoline powered vessels.

Maritime History Around Campus

Take a walk around our 3-acre campus and keep an eye out to discover unique maritime objects and landmarks from Lake Champlain including a light tower and the replica Revolutionary War gunboat, Philadelphia II.

The Clean Water Act

Mark the 50th anniversary of the Clean Water Act in this exhibit about the history of the Clean Water Act, key parts to know about this federal legislature, how it relates to Lake Champlain, and locals who continue the fight for clean water. This exhibit is also available as an online exhibit.

18th Century Blacksmith Forge: Iron & Lake Champlain

Learn about the tremendous impact of iron in the Champlain Valley and the critical role of blacksmiths in our replica 18th Century Forge, originally built to supply hardware for our replica boats. 

Exterior view of the Roost cabin
The Roost

Step back in time in this historic Adirondack-style cabin that was built for Camp Marbury, a local girls camp popular from the 1920s to 1940s. Honoring its roots, today this building is also an active kids’ space with hands-on activities and the home base for our summer camps.

S.S. Aladdin: A Summer Camp Adventure

Travel through time to the summer camps of days past! “Step aboard” and into this special exhibit space dedicated to the Aladdin, an adventure ship built and sailed on Lake Champlain by summer campers at Camp Dingley Dell from 1928 to 1939. This exhibit is housed in the Roost.

The Noble Failure: Prohibition in the Champlain Valley

Explore the complex relationship between government, society, and individuals over time during the era of Prohibition. On display at the Lakeside Outdoor Gallery next to the Roost and also available as an online exhibit.

Lake Health

How can we keep Lake Champlain healthy? Dig deeper into environmental and man-made threats to the lake and what actions we can take to make a difference. On display at North Harbor.

Exhibits closed:

Beyond the Curve: The American Abenaki COVID Experience

Located in the Museum’s Schoolhouse Gallery, this exhibit presents artwork and stories by 20 American Abenaki artists exploring the impact of the pandemic and the resilience of the Abenaki community.

Black and white photo of a women leaning on a dock rail
Women at the Helm

An outside exhibit celebrating women leaders of the Champlain Valley from the 18th century to today. On display at the Courtyard Outdoor Galley in front of Hazelett Small Watercraft Center and also available as an online exhibit.

Woman wearing an antique diving helmet
Nautical Archaeology Center and Conservation Lab

Dive into stories from some of Lake Champlain’s shipwrecks and meet an underwater archaeologist to learn how we decipher a wreck and preserve the boats and artifacts for future generations.

The majority of the museum’s objects, research resources, works of art, and images that you will see on display and that are in our collections storage, have been given to the Museum, often after passing through several generations of local families, or as gifts from people and organizations who are eager to support the museum’s work.