Museums & Galleries
Coastal Maine is peppered with museums and galleries. Use this list to guide your way to the finest attractions, or stop by to ask our friendly front desk staff to share some of their favorites places.
Joshua L. Chamberlain Museum
The Joshua L. Chamberlain Museum was the home of American Civil War general, Bowdoin College president, and Maine Governor Joshua L. Chamberlain for over 50 years. The Museum is located in Brunswick Maine and is open seasonally while in the process of being restored. Patrons will enjoy a well-appointed dining room, curvy room entryway, longfellow parlor, the library, and the governor’s room. Items on display include boots worn by Chamberlain while fighting the battle of Gettysburg, and the minie ball that ultimately took Chamberlain’s life at the battle of Petersburg.
Maine Maritime Museum
Located on a picturesque 20-acre campus on the banks of the Kennebec River just minutes from Brunswick. Friendly and knowledgeable docents bring the rich tradition of Maine boat building to life with guided tours of the Percy & Small Shipyard that includes four of the five original Shipyard buildings. Named in the National Registry of Historic Places, the site is the only remaining historic shipyard of its kind still intact today.
Enjoy a Bath Iron Works Trolley Tour, conducted from mid-May to late-October, that takes you behind the gates of Bath Iron Works to see how modern U.S. Navy destroyers are built and to learn why the phrase “Bath Built is Best Built” rings true at this ultra-modern facility.
The Boston Globe called it a “must-see,” Down East Magazine named it a “Best of Maine” attraction and Yankee Magazine named it a “Best of New England.”
Be certain to view The Wyoming evocation. The largest outdoor sculpture in New England, it is among the most visited and photographed sites in Maine. The design was conceived by acclaimed Maine sculptors Andreas von Heune and Joe Hemes.
A wonderful example of Victorian history and Brunswick history, the Skolfield-Whittier House has remained a pristine example for the region for about 150 years. You will find a house exactly as it was in 1925; including spices in the pantry and original build documents. The Skolfield-Whittier House is open seasonally from Memorial Day to Columbus Day.
Bowdoin College Museum of Art
Claiming a spot on the National Register of Historic places, the Bowdoin College Museum of Art is located on the Bowdoin College campus and offers guests a unique way to experience art and architecture. The Museum serves as a gathering place for the College and community with a central location on the College Quadrangle with a core mission to keep its collections accessible to Bowdoin students, faculty, scholars and art lovers. The building was started from donations and ultimately underwent renovations that were highly acclaimed examples of modern entry while preserving the historical structure of the building.
Peary Macmillan Arctic Museum & Arctic Studies Center
Located on the Bowdoin College Campus and named after Bowdoin College graduates and Arctic explorers, the museum is one of only two museums in the United Stated dedicated completely to Arctic Studies. Exhibitions focus on varying elements of the Arctic, including natural life, culture, expedition equipment and also show archival papers, publications and natural history specimens. The Peary–MacMillan Arctic Museum is open Tuesday – Saturday from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and on Sundays from 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm. The Museum is closed on Mondays and on national holidays. Admission is free, and donations are accepted
Pejepscot Historical Society
Founded in 1888, the Pejepscot Historical Society is among the oldest historical societies in the state of Maine. Celebrating the rich histories of Brunswick, Harpswell and Topsham, the society maintains three museums in Brunswick, Maine. The Joshua L. Chamberlain Museum is located in the adult home of its namesake who was the hero of Little Round Top at Gettysburg during the Civil War and later served as Governor of Maine and President of Bowdoin College. The Skolfield-Whitter House was home to three generations of prominent Brunswick families with careers in seafaring, medicine and education. And the Pejepscot Museum & Research Center offers rotating exhibits on topics in local history.
The Harriet Beecher Stowe House
Located at 63 Federal Street in Brunswick, Maine, this house was the rented home of Harriet Beecher Stowe and her family from 1850 to 1852. While in Brunswick, Harriet Beecher Stowe penned Uncle Tom’s Cabin. Today, the building houses “Harriet’s Writing Room,” a public space dedicated to commemorating Stowe’s contributions to American literature and history. The building is a National Historic Landmark and a National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom site.