The Wooden Boat Museum of Newfoundland and Labrador Boats and Builders Project documents the intangible cultural heritage of our tradition-bearers and records their knowledge for future generations.

Our researchers travel across the province to collect oral histories and technical data from those who built and used wooden boats. With a team that includes folklorists, naval architects and boat builders, we investigate the traditional design, construction and use of wooden boats in their unique community contexts.

This collection continues to grow as we learn from tradition-bearers across Newfoundland and Labrador.



Crystal Braye

Crystal Braye, MA

Raised by expat Newfoundlanders in Brampton, Ontario, Crystal Braye moved to Newfoundland and Labrador in 2010 to complete a masters of arts in folklore at Memorial University. With a background in cultural anthropology from Wilfrid Laurier University and keen interest in the history and heritage of Newfoundland and Labrador, Crystal worked as an intern with the Heritage Foundation of Newfoundland and Labrador to document root cellars before becoming responsible for WBMNL’s oral history documentation and field research in 2012.


Jerome Canning
Jerome Canning

Jerome Canning, Boat Builder 

Jerome first began boatbuilding in Placentia Bay, NL, where he spent his summers fishing with his father and brothers and building boats during the winter. Those early boats were used as part of his family’s fishing enterprise or sold to commercial fisher persons. In 1983, Jerome received a Diploma in Small Craft Design from the Department of Naval Architecture at the Marine Institute in St. John’s. Since then, Jerome has continued to build wooden boats, some of which have been featured in Newfoundland and Labrador cultural heritage celebrations including a Norse Faering,a French Chaloupe, Grand Bank Dories and a number of Newfoundland Punts. Jerome has worked with the Wooden Boat Museum of Newfoundland and Labrador since 2009 as WBMNL’s Master Builder and Boatbuilding Instructor.


Jeremy Harnum

Jeremy Harnum, BA

Growing up in Winterton, Jeremy’s interest in wooden boats started at a young age. Jeremy started working with the Museum in 2008, while still in high school, and was inspired to shape his career path for work in the heritage sector. Over the years, Jeremy has played many roles with WBMNL including Tour Guide, Programming Assistant, Assistant Curator, and Museum Manager. Since completing his Bachelor of Arts in Folklore at Memorial University, he has joined WBMNL’s research team in addition to working as the Museum Manager. Jeremy also enjoys photography and graphic design and is currently working towards completing a certificate in museum studies.


The Wooden Boat Museum of Newfoundland and Labrador strives to safeguard the Intangible Cultural Heritage associated with the historical design, construction and working life of Newfoundland and Labrador’s traditional wooden boats.

Mission: To archive, conserve, exhibit, and transmit our wooden boat history and its contribution to the province’s economy and way of life.

Get Involved

Take part in a Boat Building Workshop

Visit exhibits in Winterton, Trinity and Twillingate

Become a Member

Make a Donation

Join our mailing list to stay connected!

Contact Us

We would love to hear from you! To share your comments, stories, or photos please contact:

Crystal Braye
Wooden Boat Museum NL
P.O. Box 59
Winterton, NL
A0B 3M0

Phone: 709-699-9570
Fax: 709-583-2099
E-mail: folklore.wbmnl@gmail.com

To make a financial contribution or to inquire about sponsorship opportunities in support of WBMNL’s ongoing oral history documentation and education efforts, please contact Beverley at (709) 583-2070 or inquiries@woodenboatmuseum.com

3 thoughts on “About

  • December 12, 2018 at 2:06 am

    i notice you only had one boat builder from labrador ,in truth there are dozens of people from labrador that build their own boats,including myself.i’ve built something like 60 odd speedboats with my buddy,back in the day.

    • June 11, 2019 at 8:55 pm

      You’re right, our site does need more builders from Labrador! Our research last summer was focused in Labrador and we were able to interview more than twenty builders from Red Bay to Cartwright, as well as collect data for the Cartwright style of speed boat and a lapped row boat built by the late Bruce Martin. Unfortunately, we do have a backlog of builders that have been interviewed but have not yet been added to this site. However, we have added all our Labrador interviews to Memorial University archives which can be found here: http://collections.mun.ca/cdm/search/collection/boatmuseum/.

  • April 14, 2019 at 1:49 pm

    Hello there – I just came across your website while I was looking for information on my Great Uncle John Furlong from St. Brendan’s.

    Not sure how or who is involved in your boat builders ancestry but I wanted to reach out and let you know that John Furlong was a schooner & boat builder from St. Brendan’s Island. He was well known for his craft and is mentioned in Michael James Crokes book.

    It would be a great honor if some of the St. Brendan’s crowd could make it to the site as well.

    Betty Furlong


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