Shelburne Museum, it’s not all old stuff.

A few weeks before my birthday, I mentioned to my boyfriend that we hadn’t yet made plans for that day. He suggested that we head to Burlington Vermont to eat at IHOP. Because it’s the closest IHOP to us. It’s silly but I love IHOP pancakes, and even more the sirups to put on top.

Somehow we didn’t think a 4 hours round trip just to eat pancakes was a good idea so I dug around on the internet to find what we should do afterwards. That’s how I came upon the Shelburne Museum. Now I had been there on a school trip when I was in 7th grade. That was a long time ago and in my mind it was like Village Québécois d’Antan, but with a ship, I remembered being very awed by the Impressionist paintings. Sylvain was not impressed by my description but he agreed to come.

We left super early to beat the traffic at the border (it didn’t really work) and drove straight to IHOP to fill up on pancakes. And it’s a good thing too because Shelburne Museum is BIG, we did quite a bit of walking.

The first thing we saw was the round barn, inside we found a collection of ancient snowmobiles.

2 parts snow mobile

This is a snowmobile in 2 sections. It can’t really turn more than that without the threads rubbing in the skis and bad stuff happening.

The next stop was the circus building, it’s really a long horseshoe-shaped building containing carousel animals, maquettes of circus parades and antique circus posters, bragging about skeleton man and the bearded lady.

carousel giraffes

Some carousel giraffes. I had never noticed before that carousel animals only have ornaments on the sides that face the outside of the carousel, I guess that makes sense.

We went on to visit the Ticonderoga, a ferry that used to take civilians and soldiers across Lake Champlain. I’m not sure how long it took, but it did have overnight lodging.

Deck of the Ticonderoga

Deck of the Ticonderoga.

Ticonderoga seen from outside

Ticonderoga seen from the Lighthouse. It was brought to the museum on rails, some of which are still underneath the ship.

We also saw some fairly creepy medical tools in a building nearby.

Pedal machine to make dentures

I’m not sure of the purpose of these machines, but they are in the office of a dentist specialising in fake teeth.

dentist drill

I’m sorry for the quality but this is a pedal powered dentist drill. I’m oh so glad for modern medical tools.

Jars with medicine and fresh leeches.

Jars with medicine and fresh leeches. We saw some jars labeled: Brown mixture, Rhubarb & soda, syrup and P.Digital.

Wheelwright work shop

Tools in the wheelwright workshop.

We also  spent a little time in prison.

Me in prison

Let me out.

We visited a house with hand painted wallpaper (I’m not sure why they don’t just handpaint the walls) and the creepiest collection of vintage dolls and automata I have ever seen. I’d never go there at night.

Come play with me.

How could kids see that and not run away screaming?

Creepy old doll

How about this one.

Luth playing automata

Luth playing automata sticking it’s pointy evil tongue out.

We also saw beautiful quilts, in addition to the normal quilt exhibition, there was one about quilts made by men.

airplane quilt

Airplane quilt

An old settler’s farm  and the farmhouse were moved to the Shelburne grounds.

Bedroom in farm house

The one bedroom

We also saw impressionist paintings, a smokehouse, an old print shop, some weaving looms, steam trains, a light house, dozens of sleighs and carriages, antiques cars and last but not least…

Steampunk Darth Vader and Bobba Fett

Steampunk Darth Vader and Bobba Fett

Turns out there is a steampunk exhibition at Shelburne this summer along with some robots and space age toys , so we met Darth Vader, some rayguns, some very strange devices, a space age trike from Japan and astronaut posters.

So if you ever end up in Vermont, I encourage you to visit the Shelburne Museum, we had a great time.


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