Every Canoe Has A Story. Join Us In The Telling.
The Wisconsin Canoe Heritage Museum is an institution devoted to the acquisition, preservation, and dissemination of materials and information relating to the history and heritage of canoe building, canoes, and canoeing in North America. Based in Spooner, Wisconsin, the museum maintains an extensive collection of historic canoes and canoe paraphernalia, an ever changing exhibit hall, and a working canoe shop, all available to the general public as well as WCHM members.
Our exhibit hall features displays comprised of canoes and canoe related ephemera from the collection of Jill Weber Dean and Jeff Dean, as well as others. This eclectic assemblage of boats is exciting in its diversity, and includes significant craft from the golden age of North American canoeing as well as work by important contemporary builders. The building traditions of the eastern seaboard, the mid-west, and Canada are all represented, providing the museum visitor a fascinating opportunity to experience the evolution of canoe design and manufacture in proper historical context.
Our canoe shop is a 2,500 square foot, state of the art facility designed to celebrate the rich legacy of canoe craft while inspiring and educating a new generation of builders. Become a member and you can access our shop and all it has to offer for your personal projects. Frequent canoe shop programs also allow the novice to experience traditional and contemporary construction and restoration techniques through formal instruction.
Situated on the edge of Spooner’s future Railroad Park, the exhibit hall and workshop building was originally part of the Baker Grain Elevator, built circa 1912, and once a part of Spooner’s railroad infrastructure. The exposed steel truss work reflects the architectural vernacular of the era while providing a visually stunning display space for the collections.
The non-profit 501c3 organization also produces numerous events, workshops, and seminars, including its annual Canoe & Wooden Boat Show on the Saturday of Memorial Weekend. This is also the opening day of the summer season for the museum, and in addition to the boat show you can enjoy the museum open house, exhibit hall tours, canoe construction demonstrations in the shop, live music on the back porch, and food and beverage in the beer garden. For more information visit us at www.WisconsinCanoeHeritageMuseum.org.