Visit the Wooden Boat Festival Website

Exhibits & Collections

The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum features unique exhibits that illustrate the innovation, creativity, and perseverance of Louisiana’s people, concentrating on the maritime history of the Lake Pontchartrain Basin, the lower Mississippi River Valley, and the Gulf Coast of Louisiana. Lifelike examples of native Louisiana plants and animals can be seen in the museum’s exhibits, “Watch your step!”

Key Exhibits:

  • Secret Weapon! Civil War Submarine: the Pioneer
  • Jahncke Shipyard Diorama
  • Lighthouses of Louisiana
  • Wood and Water: a Celebration of Louisiana Boatbuilding
  • The Steamboat Era
  • Shaping Watersheds: Augmented Reality Sandbox

Traveling Exhibit:

Mardi Gras Shipwreck

Named after the pipeline that led to its discovery, the Mardi Gras Shipwreck was discovered 10 miles off the coast of Louisiana in 2002 when a video of a gas pipeline route in the Gulf of Mexico showed the remains of a ship that had sunk in 4,000 feet of water nearly 200 years ago. The wreckage was recorded — and more than 1,000 artifacts retrieved — through a partnership between the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) and Texas A&M University.

The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum is thrilled to display a collection of these artifacts, as well as information about the wreck, in an exhibit that helps illustrate the lives of pirates and privateers between the years of 1780 and 1820. The artifacts are on loan to the museum courtesy of the Louisiana Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism Office of Cultural Development, Division of Archaeology, through March 30, 2020.


The Lake Pontchartrain Basin Maritime Museum has a growing collection of unique maritime artifacts, photographs, and documents. The latest addition to our collections are oral histories of the Lake Ponchartrain Basin area and the Wooden Boat Festival. You can listen to the oral histories and view the transcripts on the Oral History Collection page by clicking here. The research library is currently closed for reorganization.  If you have something you would like to donate to the permanent collection, please call (985) 845-9200 or contact us by emailing

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