Information on:

Connecticut River Museum

67 Main Street

The Connecticut River Foundation at Steamboat Dock was established in 1974 as a small, all-volunteer organization dedicated to the dream of establishing a museum that would preserve the history of the Connecticut River and its people. The purchase of the 1878 Steamboat Warehouse building, docks and surrounding property was the beginning of that dream becoming a reality. Today, the Connecticut River Museum is a private, not-for-profit, education institution that is fully accredited by the American Association of Museums and is a member of the Council of American Maritime Museums and the International Congress of Maritime Museums. In 2012, the Museum expanded its ability to tell the stories of the Connecticut River and its people through the purchase of the historic Samuel Lay House, which adjoins the Museum campus.


Our mission is to lead in the study, preservation and celebration of the cultural and natural heritage of the Connecticut River and its valley. By deepening understanding of the River's importance to past generations, the Museum will inspire the stewardship of future generations.

The Connecticut River Museum currently plays an important role in collecting and protecting manuscripts, books, art and artifacts of regional significance. It also delivers high-quality exhibitions and educational programming to visitors and local residents alike, and each year introduces thousands of school children to the important stories of the River and its people. We maintain our National Registered buildings on Steamboat Dock in Essex, and provide a spectacular waterfront park as a venue for museum functions, community events and quiet reflection.


Daina Migdel

Sunday, Aug. 5, 2018
The museum was very interesting! We enjoyed the alcohol exhibit and the staircases with images and stories addre fascinating! Worth a visit in your area... especially if it's pouring outside and you can't do much outdoors.

Michael Neas

Friday, Aug. 10, 2018
Learn how the connecticut river was essential for that origination of Connecticut! Right down town essex, they have so many interesting things to see and a one person submarine to try out. They also have tours on a replica older sail boat from the 1600s. I highly recommend whether this is your first time or 1000th time in the area.

Lara Morgan

Saturday, Feb. 17, 2018
This museum van be found at the end of the main n street running through Essex. A very good example of a New England town with river views all around. Inside you will find nautical stuff. Probably the most interesting information is about The Turtle, which was the first submarine. Museum has two replicas. We enjoyed the museum, but feel $10 was a bit high for our 45 minutes of touring.

Greg LaChance

Saturday, Aug. 11, 2018
A beautiful place. Thursdays on the Dock are worth the trip.

Edgar Montanez

Monday, July 23, 2018
Very nice exhibit, interesting artifacts, but a bit pricey.... $10 for a small place. However, the shore side view and parking is worth it.

Connecticut River Museum is not affiliated with AmericanTowns Media