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(Photos by Bruce Ecker)
Experience the adventure of life on our rivers when you explore the sternwheeler Portland, the last operating steam-powered sternwheel tug in the U.S. Portland is on the National Registry of Historic Places. The vessel uses the same technology as those at the turn of the 20th century, as evident when you tour the engine room. Volunteer docents will take you on a tour of the steamer, including the pilot house and engine room, and tell stories of the local rivers and their maritime history.
Discover ship models, maritime artifacts and memorabilia. See objects and displays that relate to steam power, sailing vessels, battleship Oregon, underwater diving, and the shipyards during WWII that built the liberty ships and the merchant marines who sailed them.
Here is a demo link to the Virtual Exhibit.
The Children’s Corner has sturdy and interesting nautical objects that children can touch and operate. Your child may blow a (loud!) ship’s whistle, operate a governor and move parts of a ship model. All the while, a docent will relate stories to bring to life what it was like to work on a tug like the steamer Portland.
Safety is a priority, and adults will need to keep a close eye on children. Many of the artifacts on the steamer Portland are delicate, and “do not touch” is a rule we have to enforce, to honor both the item and those who donated it to the Oregon Maritime Museum.
Plans are being developed for a story time in the Children’s Corner. Watch the Museum's Facebook page for announcements of future events.
The Oregon Maritime Museum’s library contains s catalog of over 2,500 volumes and 22,000 photographs and negatives related to maritime history both in the Northwest region and elsewhere. The library is staffed by volunteer librarians and researchers who can assist visitors and those who want to conduct research. It is open to the public when a librarian is on duty. We are not able to loan out materials.
Requests for information or assistance may be made by email, postal mail or by telephone. If we are mailing information to you, there will be a modest charge for copying and postage. We are located at the Museum Administrative Office.
You may find books, gifts and memorabilia with a nautical theme at our Museum Store. We also carry toys and other treasures geared to children. Museum members receive a 10% discount.
Scheduled group tours are available. Please contact the volunteer coordinator at 503-224-0054 or email firstname.lastname@example.org at least two weeks in advance to schedule your visit. We will arrange for a docent to guide your group so that you won’t miss a great opportunity to understand our exhibits.
When you schedule your tour, we will explain accessibility and safety on board.
Oregon Maritime Museum is located on the steam sternwheeler Portland. It is moored on the Willamette River at Waterfront Park in downtown Portland, Oregon. Located off SW Naito Parkway at the foot of Pine Street, between the Morrison and Burnside Bridges.
Parking: Metered street parking and paid public lots are available one block to the west.
Public Transit: Portland’s TriMet buses run close to the area, and the MAX light rail Oak Street stop is two blocks to the west. Check TriMet for bus and light rail schedules.
Most spaces are open to the public; restrictions apply if there are safety concerns or there is no docent available to lead a tour.
The main deck of the steamer Portland is accessible by an ADA-approved ramp. However, once on board, there are numerous stairs, low railings and some tight spaces. For the safety of all, young children will need very close supervision.
If in doubt about weather conditions closing the museum, please call the museum office at 503-224-7724 or check this Web site. Special events may require us to close to the public. Go to the museum's Facebook page for current information.