Tuckerton Seaport Museum


Visit the home of the biggest collection of sneakboxes in the world at the Tuckerton Seaport Museum and learn about the maritime heritage in the working seaport village.

Located at the center of historic Tuckerton, NJ, along the Tuckerton Creek, Tuckerton Seaport Museum is another self-guided tour museum in the city where visitors can check on more than 10 recreated structures which includes displays, collections, workshops, educational programs and historic buildings. The museum calendar also offers special events including festivals.

The 40-acre expansive museum tour starts at the Visitor Center which serves as the entrance while tickets are available for purchase at the Gift Shop. The Visitor’s Center third floor features the exhibit called “Life on the Edge” which is devoted to the Barnegat Bay Estuary. It also highlights the Barrier Island, Pinelands and Great Bay as well as the open ocean ecosystems that the South Jersey marshlands are made up. Its lower floor houses the “Walk on the Wildside” which interprets the Jersey Shore’s four habitats with a taxidermied animals and a three wall mural.

Visitors have a variety of activities and exhibits specially offered in the recreated buildings. These buildings include the Tucker's Island Lighthouse, Skinner-Donnelly Houseboat & Periwinkle Houseboat, Joe Dayton's Sawmill, Perrine Boatworks, Parson's Clam & Oyster House, Jay C. Parker's Decoy Shop, Crest Fishery, Hotel DeCrab, Sunny Brae Salt Box, Sea Captain's House and Andrews Bartlett Homestead.

The Tucker’s Island Lighthouse is the replica of the original as it fell into the sea in 1927. Today, the lighthouse serves as Tuckerton Seaport’s centerpiece. Other crafts preserved in the museum are the two historic houseboats used by bay-men, fisherman and hunters. Created during the 1880s, the Skinner-Donnelly Houseboat is a luxury houseboat near the marsh area of Barnegat Inlet. In 1930s, a “tin-knocker” worker named Siebert created the tin-roofed Periwinkle Houseboat that is made from the Double Trouble State Park’s Jersey Cedar featuring a sun shower and galley.

Joe Dayton's Sawmill is originally a lumber for ship building and it is now converted to a Wooden Boat School where visitors can learn from the craft demonstration. Professional repair services are also offered in the boat school. Perrine Boatworks features a vintage collection, and newly constructed garveys and sneakboxes of the Barnegat Bay. Parson's Clam & Oyster House features displays about the shellfish industry in the Tuckerton Seaport. Jay C. Parker's Decoy Shop showcases the work of the legendary bayman Jay C. Parker. His works include hand-painted and hand-carved decoys in small and big sizes. He even carves miniature sneak boxes.

Crest Fishery is a hands-on pound fishery exhibit where visitors are allowed to buy seafood the same way it was sold during the 1920s. Hotel DeCrab was a dockside hotel far from a luxury type of accommodation. Here, guests were just feet apart and they sleep on iron cots. Sunny Brae Salt Box serves as a municipal meeting hall and a mayor’s office of Tuckerton Boro. Sea Captain's House is a Victorian-inspired house built in 1835 while the Andrew Bartlett Homestead is the oldest home in Ocean County.

Tuckerton Seaport Museum is dedicated to preserve the history and traditions of the baymen of Jersey Shore. For more exciting experience visit the museum in June, during the Seafood Festival, and buy steamed clams, crab cakes as well as grilled shrimp and scallops cooked by the museum volunteers.