Maine Tourism: Islesford Historical Museum

Acadia National Park
> Bar Harbor Maine Attractions
> Islesford Historical Museum

Islesford Historical Museum

Ever wonder what it was like living on a remote Maine island in the 1800's. When visiting Little Cranberry be sure to visit the Islesford Historical Museum which tells the story of island life. Read More

  • Admission is free
  • Located on Little Cranberry Island in Frenchmans Bay along the coast of Maine
  • Open daily from 10 am to noon and 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. from mid-June through September
  • The Museum highlights the history of island life


Exhibits give insight into how island children were educated, how families made a living, what home life was like; tools, fishing items, household items, woodworking items, and information on shipbuilding, all reflective of the independence and self-reliance needed to survive the harsh environment.

How to get there

The islands are only accessible by boat. A mail boat, tour boats, water taxi’s and ferries from Northeast Harbor, Southwest Harbor, and Manset make regular trips to these two islands. You can visit Great Cranberry and Little Cranberry Island on the same ticket when using the ferries. They carry only passengers, pets, and small freight, such as bicycles. Accommodations for larger vehicles are through barge rental only.

This pleasant trip, on a calm day will take about twenty minutes. As you approach Little Cranberry Island, and make your way through the tangle of fishing boats in the harbor. On the shoreline, you will notice two buildings that stand out from the rest. These structures are a part of Acadia National Park, and both serve to preserve the memory of the history of the Cranberry Islands, as shelter for artifacts of islanders of years past. Behind the first, a wooden structure, the Museum is a 1 ½-story brick Georgian Revival building.

Days and Hours

Open from late May through September, the park offers a ranger narrated Islesford Historical Cruise, including a 45-minute stop at the museum. The museum is open daily from 10 am to noon and 12:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. from mid-June through September. Admission is free.

Other Highlights

Visitors can also visit the Island Historical societies, History Room, a separate building attached to the Library and the Islesford Neighborhood House. Little Cranberry island also offers artisan shops, pottery, kayak rentals, and local cafés.