In partnership with the Maine Memory Network Maine Memory Network

Abbe Museum

Abbe Museum Facts

The Abbe Museum was founded in 1926 and first opened to the public in 1928.

"The Abbe's most critical role is that of a good will ambassador. The museum’s leadership and staff work very hard to maintain a direct connection between the Wabanaki people and the general population interested in learning about them, in the true context of today, as related by the aboriginal people themselves.

The Abbe consistently strives to preserve the past, to educate in the present by utilizing the knowledge of Wabanaki people, and to maintain a constant focus for the future."
– Madonna Soctomah, former Representative of the Passamaquoddy Tribe in the Maine Legislature

The archaeological collections consist primarily of stone tools such as projectile points, knives, axes and fishing weights; bone objects such as harpoons, fish hooks, combs and needles; and ceramics including the earliest known pottery styles in Maine.

From more recent times, the collections include 17th-century glass trade beads and copper tools. Eighteenth-century objects include quillwork, birchbark, jewelry and an etched powder horn attributed to Chief Orono of the Penobscot Nation. The 19th century is well represented by finely woven ash and sweetgrass baskets, delicate Micmac quill boxes, etched birchbark containers and colorful, highly decorative beaded items.

The contemporary collection documents the continuing Native American craft tradition in Maine with objects including woodcarvings and birchbark containers. Basketry is especially well represented.

Abbe Downtown - Museum and Shop
Winter Hours:
Open Thursday - Saturday, 10-4
Closed January

2011 Summer Hours:
Late May through early November
Open Daily 10-5

Follow Rte. 3 from Ellsworth onto Mount Desert Island. Continue on Rte. 3 to downtown Bar Harbor. The museum is located at 26 Mount Desert Street (Route 3) across from the Bar Harbor Village Green. Free on-street and municipal parking available near the museum.