The Maritime Museum’s collections are extremely rich and varied. They include pieces ranging from a ship that still sails to a postal stamp, or from a steam engine to a 14th-century manuscript. Of course, they also include everything you expect to find in a maritime museum: binnacles, anchors, model ships, navigational tools, etc. In other words, all sorts of documents and objects from the miniscule to the huge, from all different periods and made of all sorts of materials. For decades, the Museum has gathered examples of the maritime past, a heritage that reminds us of the lives of seafarers, the histories of ships and maritime activities in peacetime or war.
We would like to offer a selection of objects and documents that are notable for their historical interest, their rarity or their aesthetic value. These can give you a general idea of the content of the Museum’s collection. However, do not forget that there is a great deal beyond this selection, with thousands of artefacts and documents that you can discover using our search engine or other resources.
We encourage you to take a stroll through some of the key pieces in our Museum’s collection, grouped into twelve categories to help you keep your bearings.
Portrait of vessels belonging to the shipping line Mir y Cia, by Josep Montgay TornéShip portraits
Painting showing the fleet of the Mir y Cia shipping company of Barcelona. This oil-on-canvas piece shows the company’s active ships in 1886, the year it was painted: the barquentines Alfredo and Lorenzo, and the brigs Pisogas and Ataúlfo. Although individual ship’s portraits are most common, occasionally shipowners would request collective portraits like this one. All the ships fly the Spanish ensign (originally, it was only the flag of the Spanish merchant marine), and a flag showing they are registered in Barcelona. To correctly identify the vessels, the artist added their names on pennants. Still, the company flag is not shown.