Whaleback Ship Museum
Come Tour The
200 Marina Drive, Superior, WI – on Barker’s Island
The last above-water Whaleback ship in the world! Exhibit space is open during regular hours. All tours will depart from the Gift Shop on the bottom of the hour. Guests will be allowed to view the exhibit and visit the Gift Shop before and after the tour. Everyone 17 and under must be accompanied by an adult on tours.
If it is hot outside (above 85 F) call ahead (715-394-5712) to make sure that we are open. We will contact reservations due to cancellation. If it is above 85 F inside the ship we may close early.
During the tour, you will encounter multiple ladders and stairs to go up and down and heights when on the boat deck. Closed-toe shoes or shoes with a good grip and no skirts/dresses are STRONGLY recommended.
All ticket sales are final. Exception: if Superior Public Museums cancels the tour/event due to weather, private event, or COVID-19, guests will have the option to reschedule, donate the amount, or get a full refund. Complimentary, library and membership passes are not valid for special tours and events.
Please note the daily tour schedule may change based on staffing. Please visit "book your tour today" above for the current schedule.
May 14 - 31, 2022
June 1 - September 5, 2022
Special Night Tours!
June 23 - August 20, 2022
September 6 - October 9, 2022
Learn About the History
The SS Meteor is the last remaining above-water whaleback ship in the world! Open seasonally from May – October. All guided tours depart from the Gift Shop on the bottom of the hour.
The whaleback freighter was designed by Captain Alexander McDougall and built here in Superior, Wisconsin. These ships, innovative for their time, earned the name “whaleback” for their cigar-shaped steel hulls that rode low in the water when loaded with cargo.
McDougall’s Whaleback #136 has seen many changes since she was launched as the Frank Rockefeller in Superior harbor less than a mile from where she now rests. She ended her shipping career as the SS Meteor, after carrying a variety of cargoes over the years, including iron ore, grain, sand and gravel, cars, and oil.
In 1972, after sailing under three names and being refitted twice, the SS Meteor returned to Superior and is now permanently land-berthed on Barker’s Island. Tour the ship from pilot house to cargo holds. The Museum also features exhibits on Great Lakes shipwrecks and the history of shipbuilding in the Twin Ports.