Reedville Fishermen's Museum
Reedville, VA
Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network

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Brief Description: The Reedville Fishermen's Museum is located on the banks of Cockrell's Creek on land once owned by Captain Elijah Reed. In 1867 Reed sailed down to the Chesapeake from Maine and into the creek, setting up his first small fishery. Today Reedville remains one of the most active fishing ports in America and the heart of the menhaden fleet.

The museum houses a collection of artifacts and historical material covering the history of menhaden fishing from its inception to the present. Unique models of fishing vessels and tools used for building and maintaining the fleet are on display. Museum exhibits include a history of watermen's activities from early native American practices to those used today by oystermen, pound fishermen and crabbers. Part of the museum houses rotating exhibits and educational programs, and from the deck there are views of Cockrell's Creek from which two modern fleets still set out to fish for menhaden from May through December.

Location / Directions:

The Museum is located at the easternmost end of Route 360 which becomes Main Street when it terminates in Reedville. Follow Main Street for 1/2 mile and the Museum is on the right hand side of the street.

Drivers coming from northern and western locations are advised to connect with route 360 in Tappahannock.

Coming from Hampton Roads or points south it is best to take Route 3 to Kilmarnock and turn right on Route 200 and follow it until it intersects with Route 360 in Burgess. Then take a right turn to Reedville.

Driving Directions
Physical Address: Reedville Fishermen's Museum
504 Main Street
Reedville, VA 22539
Mailing Address: Reedville Fishermen's Museum
PO Box 306
Reedville, VA 22539
Visitor Phone: (804) 453-6529

The Reed Gallery houses a permanent exhibit where one can walk through a series of displays featuring ship models, photographs, and artifacts that tell the story of the menhaden industry and how it shaped Reedville. A guided tour of the Walker House gives one a glimpse of life in a typical waterman’s home of the early 1900's. The museum grounds and dock also house a public research library and a collection of traditional Chesapeake Bay watercraft.

A number of educational programs are offered throughout the year including oyster growing and gill net fishing workshops. Model building classes are also offered by the Museum and are conducted periodically by skilled modelers from the region. Annual events include a golf tournament in late April, a "Blessing of the Fleet" in early May, "Hometown Parade and Fireworks" the Saturday of July 4th weekend, an oyster roast in early November, and the "Christmas on Cockrell’s Creek Tour" during early December.

Boat Access Educational Programs

Fees: $3.00 Adults, children 12 and under and members free.
Visitor Facilities: Museum gallery, example of a waterman’s home, public research library (by appointment), collection of traditional Chesapeake Bay watercraft, and gift shop.
Accessibility: The Reedville Fishermen's Museum is fully accessible for wheelchairs with the exception of the second floor of the Walker House, our 1875 watermen's home. The Museum has provided large format photographs of the second floor so that those who are unable to climb the steep, narrow stairway can get an idea of the modest furnishings.

Chesapeake Bay Gateways Network - Comments or Questions: Call: 1-800-YOUR-BAY