Over 4,000 Objectsand art in our Artefact Collection
More than 3,500 linear feet of Records in our Archival Collection
More than 50,000 Ship Plans and over 3,500 linear feet of records in our collection
A broad range of instruments, tools and equipment used by mariners and shipbuilders
More than 31,000 Photos professional and amateur over many decades

Marine Museum of the Great Lakes at Kingston

55 Ontario Street, Kingston, Ontario K7L 2Y2

613 542-2261


Walking Directions from City Hall

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From City Hall - 7 minutes walking

 Fall Hours 
Open Monday - Friday, 10:00 - 4:00

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The Importance of the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes to the History of Kingston

With all the discussion of the Marine Museum of late it is vital to look back at our maritime history and see how the waters (Lake Ontario, Cataraqui River and the St. Lawrence River) were vital to the founding, growth and prosperity of our city. It also highlights the importance of the Marine Museum in tracing and remembering that maritime life over the last 340 years.

This is a story that must not be lost.


Welcome to the Marine Museum of the Great Lakes

The Marine Museum of the Great Lakes in Kingston was founded in 1975. Located on 55 Ontario St. at the only federally built dry dock on the Great Lakes, the Marine Museum houses the original pumping station and steam engines built in 1891. 

The Museum has on display a wide ranging collection of marine artifacts and exhibits, a significant fine art collection, and is home to the Gordon C. Shaw Study Centre, and Audrey Rushbrook Memorial Library.  Current exhibits highlight the growth of ship building and shipping technologies, the history of boat building, the life of the sailor, as well as regional Kingston's maritime history and our place on the Great Lakes.  The recently opened Eco Gallery focuses on environmental issues/successes related to the Great Lakes.

The Museum Ship Alexander Henry was built in 1959. A former buoy tender and light icebreaker for the Canadian Coast Guard, the Alexander Henry is a fine example of shipbuilding from the last century. With its twenty ton crane, block and tackle, hydraulic ram and other functional machinery, visiting students can learn first hand about this purpose built structure, and about ice breaking in Canadian waters. The ship is available for tours from May - October, weather permitting.

In The News: Marine Museum of The Great Lakes (Kingston, Ontario) - by Alex Binkley, Canadian Sailings Magazine

Museum News

News Update
Marine Museum Awarded Sir John A. Macdonald Grant

The Museum has been awarded $8,886 from the City of Kingston Heritage Fund to design and install interpretive signage around the historic limestone dry dock to describe the role Sir John A. played in establishing the first federal dry dock on the Great Lakes on our site. Read more...

News Update - Museum's Future in Peril

The Marine Museum faces its greatest challenge as the Canadian federal government prepares to sell the Kingston Dry Dock and Engine House, designated a National Historic Site, and the property the Marine Museum has occupied the last 40 years.

March 19 - Chris West spoke with the Whig-Standard about the current state of the Marine Museum, including our new lease. Read the latest here and tune in to CBC Ontario Morning on Friday March 20 at 6:40am to hear about it!

Click here to read letters of support to the Marine Museum.