Views of the Connecticut River as it changes throughout history can be seen through a series of paintings that are on display in the art gallery. Beautiful water color paintings that portray the changing industrial buildings and commerce along the river can also be viewed in the art section. In the folk- life section of the museum, visitors can expect to see a vast collection of various handmade tools that were used by the locals of the lower River Valley Essex. Included in the collection of artifacts that inhabitants used for hunting and fishing, as well as a few of the boats that were used for fisherman or river travel. In the navigational department, many more tools such as the old compasses and telescopes used by travelers on the river can be examined. Since the Connecticut River attracted many yacht owners in the 1890s, there is a display that contains models of yachts for the public to enjoy.
When visitors finish their thrilling tour through the Connecticut River Museum, they can continue on their journey through Connecticut maritime enlightenment on the riverfront beside of the museum and even on the river! The very first submarine used during the American Revolution, The Turtle, can be explored on the grounds of the museum. From June to October, visitors can make arrangements to go on a tour of the river aboard the Mary E, and in February and March, American bald eagles can be seen flying over the river. Antique boats shows and boat parades occur throughout the year as well. All of the events are must-see, and will provide children and adults alike with endless learning opportunities through educational programs and tours.