Why Am I So Pissed About The Tahoe Maritime Museum Closing?


By now the closing of the Tahoe Maritime Museum is old news. The boats are headed to auction on Bring A Trailer. I suppose thats a great place for the auction to be less filled with “the tricks of the auction trade” And out there for everyone to participate. I am sad for sure. But pissed? Why?

Florence – MII Image Courtesy Tahoe Maritime Museum

So I need some meditating on the subject. I try and understand emotions as much as possible, and pissed at a museum seems so strange. And yet. The conclusion I came to is they are like churches. Places where people entrust artifacts of history, donate, and volunteer. So it seems frustrating that they close, and also sell the gold they were entrusted with.

Heck, even churches go bust. So for some reason that doesn’t frustrate me. I suppose I feel for the folks that donated and sold there stuff to the museum, who thought they were doing the right thing. Preserving history for future generations. But then again. Not all boats are worthy, and so I get it, I really do. In fact  I am thinking of opening up The Woody Boater Museum. Looking for boat donations. I will scatter them around with a collection of toilets and tow ropes. maybe I am pissed at the lack of donations to keep such a place afloat. Running a museum is not easy work. Its hard work, it’s begging, preserving, and attracting new people. It takes guts to adjust and navigate the politics of donors and board members. Like churches, they are run on emotion, and passion.

Bring a Trailer — Florence – MII, Image Courtesy Tahoe Maritime Museum

Ya know what, maybe I am not pissed. Maybe I am just hungry. Yup, thats it, Never mind. Stay tuned to Bring A Trailer for some amazing boats.

9 replies
  1. Tuobanur
    Tuobanur says:

    The museum is closing they are selling off the artifacts,,,,,,,,where is the money going??

  2. Jeff
    Jeff says:

    I’m bummed its closing and I never been there. I was planning on going this summer when was up there for the Concourse show. Oh ya…. another event canceled.
    What about artwork and literature sales ? Does anyone know how that stuff will sell ?

  3. Bernie LeMay
    Bernie LeMay says:

    If anyone is interested, live on ESPN2, bass fishing from Clayton. Beautiful drone shots of museum and entire area.

  4. Mark in da U P
    Mark in da U P says:

    So Fu(#!n sad. I like Jeff have never been there. It still upsets me. More history lost.

  5. Jim G
    Jim G says:

    There 2 property locations are up for sale for a little over 6 million. The main sight were the museum is right at the new bypass location so property price went up a lot.

    They say all the money is going to the new Tahoe Maritime Foundation.

    They are closing because the fund raiser they did in March to make ends meet because of Covid did not raise enough money.

    • Jerome
      Jerome says:

      So very sad. Like so many of you I never got to go to the museum. I guess that is my fault. Also sad to those people that donated boats & other artifacts to the museum thinking that they were going to a safe place for future generations to enjoy!!

  6. Kelly Wittenauer
    Kelly Wittenauer says:

    Not sure, but it’s possible artwork, literature & memorabilia will go on BaT as well. I often see tool kits, literature & other car related bits auctioned there.

    Always neat stuff on BaT. Be sure to discover Sludgo’s Mile Markers, if you haven’t already. Well worth the reading time.

    But bidding there can be painfully drawn out. Nearing close, the end time of the auction is reset additional minutes each time someone bids. Keeps people from “last minute sniping” like on eBay & undoubtedly brings in more $$$. But can really make the process seem unending.

  7. TJ
    TJ says:

    It is usually museum policy to notify former owners and give them the first right of refusal for donated items. Anything they did not want to buy back etc then gets offered to other maritime museums, then goes to auction. This is why unrestricted and deeds of gifts exist to keep donation expectations in check.

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