Permanent Galleries - New Bedford Whaling Museum

Permanent Galleries

Spend an hour, spend a day or more. There is always something to see at the Museum.

Permanent Galleries

An exhibition dedicated to the science and behavior of whales, their cultural impact, the current threats to their survival, and empowering all to support conservation efforts.

An exhibition dedicated to the science and behavior of whales, their cultural impact, the current threats to their survival, and empowering all to support conservation efforts. The Whaling Museum tells the story of human interaction with whales in the world’s oceans.

Geography, environment and habitat have all contributed to the growth of cultures that hunt whales for food, bones and oil for survival in regions where agriculture is difficult or impossible.

In 1602 English seafarers explored coastal Massachusetts for timber, fish and furs. By the 1620s, strong differences in religious beliefs led groups like the Pilgrims (and later the Puritans) to leave England and colonize Massachusetts in pursuit of a better life.

Installed in 2012, this is a sumptuous “permanent” exhibition of the best, most representative, and most compelling curiosities of our vast scrimshaw holdings — a generous selection drawn from the world’s largest and greatest collection. The exhibition is the partial result of 25+ years of cataloguing and research.

Energy and Enterprise Energy and Enterprise: Industry and the City of New Bedford tells the story of New Bedford’s evolution from a whaling port to a manufacturing center. Energy and Enterprise Energy and Enterprise: Industry and the City of New Bedfor …

The Two Nations of Manjiro Nakahama explores the remarkable life and influence of Manjiro Nakahama (1827-1898), the first Japanese person to live in and learn English in the U.S. after his rescue at sea in 1841 by the John Howland, a New Bedford whaleship.

An exhibition devoted to the life, times, and legacy of Captain Paul Cuffe–an abolitionist, entrepreneur, merchant, whaler, navigator and much more.

Step aboard the spectacular Lagoda, the New Bedford Whaling Museum’s half-scale model of the whaling bark. Built inside the Bourne Building in 1915-16, with funds donated by Emily Bourne in memory of her father, whaling merchant Jonathan Bourne, Jr., Lagoda is the largest ship model in existence.

Grab your passport and experience a new world encountered by New Bedford whalers. Voyages connected world cultures through commerce and helped establish American hegemony in far-flung ports. Through both commercial activity and crewmen enlisting and disembarking, these voyages set in place the initial pattern of immigration that follows to this day.

The New Bedford Whaling Museum and City of New Bedford established a long-term collaboration with Cabo Verde aimed at celebrating the cultural and industrial connections between them.