The Columbia River Maritime Museum located on the waterfront in Astoria OR has the largest collection of Pacific Northwest maritime artifacts in the country. The exterior is amazing architecturally which makes it very inviting.
After paying my $14 admission fee I begin my journey. The museum is a privately funded nonprofit museum so I don’t think twice in handing over my money to help their cause and keep the good work going.
A large, once used Lighthouse Fresnel Lens greets you as you walk in.
A map spotting where vessels have been lost in these treacherous waters where the Columbian River meets the Atlantic Ocean. This area is known as The Graveyard of the Pacific. In the past 200 years there have been as many as 2,000 ships sunk and over 700 lives claimed by this area.
Full size fishing boats from different eras are laid out for you to see.
This region is dependent on the fishing industry and reading some of the stories and tales here at the museum are very interesting.
A Coast Guard Boat mockup depicting the rescue of a fisherman in high seas.
Standing next to this boat and seeing the angle is amazing. First thing I noticed is the captain is buckled into his seat and has no less than 4 tie downs fixing him to the boat itself.
The Sextant. A tool that maritimers entrusted theirs lives in. I had always wondered how these worked and how they were used. The museum has a neat interactive booth that teaches you how these Sextants work and how to use them. I had the most fun with that!
Salmon labels from various fisheries around the area.
Price of admission also allows you to venture onto and explore the Lightship The Columbia. This ship was a floating lighthouse that was stationed about 5 miles off the coast to help vessels identify where the mouth of the Columbia River was. It served from 1951 to 1979 and was added to the museum in 1980.
Location: Columbia River Maritime Museum