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Herreshoff Marine Museum

Herreshoff Marine Museum

Lending insight to a technical innovator in steam and sail

What began as a family passion became a boatbuilding legend. The Herreshoff brothers, John, known as “Captain Nat” and his brother Nathanael, designed and built hundreds of sailing and steam-powered vessels during the years they owned Herreshoff Manufacturing Company. These ranged from the 25-foot Buzzards Bay sailing boat line to the largest racing yacht ever produced, the America’s Cup defender Reliance. Their steam-powered, steel-hulled vessels included torpedo boats, launches, and the 140-foot yacht Alert. It was a daunting task to translate this story into a multi-media, chronological exhibit with the 32-foot long wall area at the museum’s entry. The mural environment we created is a backdrop for a variety of visitor experiences; graphic interactives, touch screen experience, and objects. This exhibit has been well-received by the board and staff, a most critical constituency in a vertically focused museum such as the Herreshoff.

HMM Timeline interactive wireframe


A simple experience flow, the major work involved the creation of content. This included research for archival footage as well as an interview with the Reliance project leader.

Content Flow

The design of the interface and colorway was an extension of the exhibit it was part of. The audio system did not rely on handsets, but instead used a bar speaker.

HMM installed interactive

Completed Installation

This exhibit proved very popular, the Museum is very enthusiastic that a major initiative, the Reliance Project, is prominently featured. The actual 1/6 scale model is not easily accessible to visitors because of its location in the Hall of Boats.