EXPERIENCE THE TOWN’S SEAFARING HISTORY FROM SHIPOWNERS TO NAVAL PILOTS
The museums of Uusikaupunki take you on a journey through the history of a seaside town.
In the age of sailing ships, nearly every family in Uusikaupunki was in the seafaring business, in one way or another. Boys started work as sailors at a young age, and some became captains. Shipowners owned shares from ships and lived in big houses. Ships would set out laden with timber and return carrying salt. Naval pilots were responsible for keeping sea traffic safe.
Wahlberg’s house showcases seafaring history and the life of a middle-class family. The house was built 150 years ago, and it was originally the home of the town’s wealthiest tradesman, shipowner and tobacco manufacturer Fredrik Wahlberg. The master’s room still has the original, hand-painted wallpapers, and there are several beautifully decorated old tile stoves and skilfully made ceiling paintings. Downstairs you can almost expect the family to walk back in any minute.
Upstairs, you walk into the world of seafaring. The figureheads of merchant ships, sailor's chests and navigational instruments tell of a time when ships communicated using signal flags and sailors journeyed to the edges of the word, waiting for letters from their families. The exhibition also introduces the more modern times of shipbuilding and dock work, when ships were laden with cars instead of timber. The history of the town’s basketball team, originating from the car factory, also has its own section.
The changing exhibition for summer 2020 tells stories about local houses. The exhibition delves into the history of interesting local buildings, both those demolished and those still standing. At the end of the year, Wahlberg’s house will be decorated for Christmas.
The Sailor’s Home museum and the Naval Pilot museum are only open during the summer season. At the Sailor’s Home museum, you can see what life was like for a local sailor’s family in the early 20th century. In the small cottage, you are taken back to a time when water was carried in from a well, the house was heated with a wood-burning stove, and a spinning wheel was part of the furniture.
The Naval Pilot museum is located in a former pilot station, built in 1857, on the Vallinmäki hillside. Piloting was a respected profession. The pilot was charged with guiding ships to port and maintaining beacons. At a time when sailing ships had no radios or telephones, this could be a dangerous endeavour.
In the Regional Museum of Kalanti along the historic trade route of Sirppujoki, you can learn about the history of local countryside. The museum consists of a beautiful main building and several outbuildings. The museum is open by agreement.
Children and the young-at-heart have been taken into account in the museums. Children can, for example, play detectives by finding curious items in the museum buildings. At the Sailor’s Home museum, you can try washing clothes by hand and try walking on stilts. In the outbuilding of Wahlberg’s house, you can try your luck at running a shop. Wahlberg’s house also has a small museum shop where you can find souvenirs.
Ylinenkatu 11, 23500 Uusikaupunki
The museum of Uusikaupunki Wahlberg´s House
Summer opening hours from June 8 to August 30
Mon–Fri from 10 am to 5 pm and
Sat–Sun from 12 pm to 3 pm
Other times Tue–Fri from 12 pm to 3 pm)
Groups at all times by agreement.
Other museums are only open during the summer season, check opening times online at uudenkaupunginmuseo.fi or from the museum office tel. +358 44 351 5447