The Door County Maritime Museum in Sturgeon Bay, tells the story of the men and boats that worked the area, fishing and towing. The Peterson Gallery traced the history of area navigation from Indian dugouts to World War II naval vessels to luxury yachts all made in Door County. Sturgeon Bay is the “Shipbuilding Capital of the Great Lakes.” The first shipping container was designed and built here called the “Safe way.”
The Tug John Purves was built in 1919 as an ocean-going tug. She had been around the world and served in WW II before coming to the Great Lakes in 1956. She worked on all five Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence Seaway towing and doing salvage jobs. The John Purves was donated to the Museum and restored through 27,000 volunteer hours.