We welcome you to tour the Canal Museum in our Interpretive Center.
The only museum designed to tell the story of the Wabash & Erie Canal’s 44 year operational history. From the vision of George Washington to the final collapse of the Canal in 1876 you will learn about the impact the Canal had on the development of the Midwest and your young country.
The Canal “highway”, comparable to our modern interstates brought people and products to Indiana and the Midwest during the mid-1800’s. Canal construction began in Fort Wayne, Indiana in 1812. Upon completion in 1853 the Canal spanned 468 miles from Toledo, Ohio to Evansville, Indiana on the Ohio River.
It provided a water route that connected New York and the East Coast with the Mississippi River, New Orleans and the Gulf of Mexico. You will trace the routes travelers took before the construction of the Canal and the “convenience” the canal boats brought to them.
In the lobby of the Interpretive Center you will be welcomed by our mural, a series of oil paintings which highlight historic sites along the Canal from Toledo to Evansville.
In the museum, you will encounter unique interactive exhibits which provide an exciting way for children and adults to learn about the Canal. You can operate a lock, visit a full-sized canal boat cabin and stretch out on the bunks. Learn how our local papermills produced paper from old clothes or the lime kilns produced plaster. Visit the millinery shop and dress yourself in one of our period costumes, and much more.