Aberdeen Maritime Museum
Welcome to Aberdeen Maritime Museum – a journey of discovery
Close to the busy harbour, on the historic Shiprow, Aberdeen Maritime Museum tells the story of the city’s long and often dramatic relationship with the sea, from the earliest days of trading, fishing and shipbuilding, to the discovery of North Sea oil and gas, and Aberdeen’s place today as a leader in global energy transition.
This fascinating story is told through rich and varied collections which are displayed over four floors in the modern, fully-accessible museum building and in the historic 16th century Provost Ross’s House. Highlights include ship models from 1689 to the present, whaler’s harpoons and scrimshaw, rare examples of medieval imported goods, a complete lighthouse lens assembly and the entire deck of a historic steamer.
During the 19th and 20th centuries, around 3,000 ships were built in Aberdeen. Models, paintings and photographs tell the story of Aberdeen-built ships such as the tea clipper ‘Thermopylae’ and the ‘Jho Sho Maru’, one of the first modern warships in the Japanese navy.
Since 2004 a dedicated group of volunteers has been researching and writing the histories of over 3,000 recorded vessels built in Aberdeen. Their sources include shipbuilders’ yard lists, Lloyd’s Register of shipping, and the memories of local people associated with the shipyards of Aberdeen. Visit the website at www.aberdeenships.com
From the top floor, enjoy fantastic views over Aberdeen Harbour, the oldest existing business in Britain, with a history that has spanned almost 900 years. Discover the harbour’s story through objects from the 13th to the 21st century which reveal Aberdeen’s global trade links.
Aberdeen flourished as a major fishing port throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. The city built the vessels and provided both their crews and the workers who process the catches landed at the fish market. Outside the Museum on Shiprow you can see Aberdeen’s Fishing Memorial (unveiled in 2018) which commemorates the major contribution fishing and fishing folk have made to the city
Oil and gas
Explore life offshore, discover how oil and gas are found and extracted, and take in the incredible detail of the 9-metre-high model of the Murchison platform – as close as any of us will ever get to an offshore installation. A new display opening in late summer 2021, supported by the Friends of Aberdeen Archives, Gallery & Museums, looks at energy, work and people.
Stories of Aberdeen
We don’t just collect objects, we also collect memories and stories. Find out more here
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