Steamboat Era Museum

40th Anniversary  •  History

Steamboat Potomac 1894
Steamboat Potomac 1894

SEMlogoThe Steamboat Era Museum in Irvington, Virginia, tells the story of the economic and cultural legacy of steamboat transport and commerce on the Chesapeake Bay. Since 2001, VFH has awarded the museum a number of grants to support oral history projects and interpretive exhibits that bring to life the bygone era of the steamboat in Virginia.

There was a time when steamboats were an integral part of the lives of Virginians. These steam-powered vessels connected isolated rural communities to the world through cities like Norfolk and Baltimore. They moved people and goods, creating and sustaining new towns and economies along the Chesapeake Bay.

Learn just how critical steamboats were to Virginians in this 2005 audio postcard from our former colleague Nancy King.

VFH - 40 Years, 40 Stories

About VFH

Since its founding in 1974, VFH has produced more than 40,000 humanities programs serving communities large and small throughout Virginia, the nation, and the world.

These stories celebrate our 40th anniversary by sharing a few of the ways VFH has helped connect people and ideas to explore the human experience and inspire cultural engagement across the Commonwealth.