Although any object can serve as a document for an investigator, in general we refer to “documents” when we mean paper or parchment containing information. The Museum has a rich collection of documents of all sorts, from company records to blueprints of vessels, bills of health, company shares, ships’ logs or many others. In some cases, these documents are part of large collections like those of the Companyia Trasatlàntica, the Porters’ Guild, the Harbour Works Board of Barcelona, the Naval Union of Barcelona, Estibarna, etc., or the collections of notable individuals from the maritime world. In other cases, these are documents collected by the Museum over decades through purchase or the recovery of personal documentation, allowing for the conservation of certain types of documents that are rare in other archives.
Some documents help us to understand maritime activities and the seafaring life, while other refer to historical events or notable characters from the maritime world. Some even have aesthetic value, while all help to illustrate some aspect of the adventure of sailing.