Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Maine: Seal Cove Auto Museum

The Seal Cove Auto Museum is not exactly on the beaten track. As a matter of fact, unless you are in Bar Harbor, Maine and looking for something unusual to do, it is unlikely that you would ever hear of this museum. It is located on Mount Desert Island in the town of Seal Cove, which these days is an enclave of wealth and status. This is where Martha Stewart and Susan Sarandon have their summer homes. It is where the wealthy went when Bar Harbor became too bourgeoisie.

The museum was a wonderfully unexpected but delightful surprise. The vehicles here, the autos, bicycles and motorcycles are mostly from the “Brass Era” 1895-1917. This is not the first auto museum we have been to. As a matter of fact, we have been to some of the finest in the world and I really thing that this one deserves to be included among them. I was impressed from the moment we entered the door. I even paid to see it which if you know me you realize is a big deal.

The Seal Cove Auto Museum is housed in a simple building, you would never guess the treasures that it holds. The collection began as the private collection of Richard Paine. According to the museum website “The Paine collection represents not only one man’s love of automobiles, it also reflects an aesthetic wrapped in Richard’s love of Maine and his roots in New England, coincidentally the birthplace of the American automobile industry. Born near Boston in one of New England’s patrician families, his eye—rather than his modest fortune—created his world famous collection. “

Allow at least an hour to visit here, if you have more than a casual interest allow more. The collection is quite amazing and there are often other exhibits and events happening at the museum. Among the treasures that they have on display are Indian motorcycles, Model T Fords and many very rare cars created in towns all over New England from manufacturers that we have never heard of including Pope from Hartford, Conn.

The museum is open from May 1 through October 31 daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Check their website for the latest entrance fees and schedule of events.  


  1. What an interesting museum! My husband would love it. You provide a wealth of info on fascinating places.

  2. Thanks Kim, we love to travel and we also enjoy some of the more unique sites.