Seafaring has played a vital role in Onsala’s historical development, not least as regards the various forms of coastal shipping conducted by the rural population in earlier times. At the Onsala Maritime Museum, you can follow this story from the 16th century to the present day. You can see how seamen navigated in past centuries, what their onboard leisure activities were, what they took home from far-away destinations, and much else besides, making it rewarding excursion for both young and old.
The decision to build Onsala Maritime Museum was taken in 1996 by the Onsala Preservation Society and consequently in 1998 a non-profit association was formed. The museum building is a carriage hall earlier situated at a rectory in Kungssäter, about 35 kilometers northeast of Varberg, the older parts of which date from the 1880s. The carriage hall, constructed in 1920, was dismantled, each item being numbered, and re-erected on its present site at Onsala. In June 2000, it was inaugurated as Onsala Maritime Museum.
On the upper floor of the museum there is, in addition to numerous exhibits, a library full of interesting books on maritime subjects. On the ground floor there is an exhibition area containing clinker-built boats, boat engines and a workshop where visitors can see how rope- and sailmakers worked in bygone eras and acquaint themselves with boatbuilders’ tools. A new exhibition object, provided by the Gothenburg Maritime Museum, is a cannon from Grefve Mörner, a ship once captained by Lars Gathenhielm (1689–1718), a Swedish merchant and privateer. There is also a large function room that can be rented for activities such as lectures, art exhibitions and meetings.
In the grounds outside the museum are several examples of work- and leisure craft.
Text: Marie Cervin
Translation: Allan Wilson
Hagards väg 1
439 31 Onsala