North Star of Herschel Island

Exciting news from the Vancouver Maritime Museum, which is raising money to acquire the North Star of Herschel Island for the museum’s collection, ensuring and enhancing her presence in our harbour!


Thank you to those of you who have donated to our Arctic campaign. Your support is deeply appreciated and directly funds the museum’s efforts to refresh our Arctic galleries.
We are writing to you again because of an exciting development regarding the North Star of Herschel Island; we have received a significant pledge of $100,000 from a local resident towards the acquisition of this vessel!
Built in 1935, the North Star worked the Arctic simultaneously with the St. Roch, so much so that they have been called “sisters of the ice”. Currently moored at Heritage Harbour, this ship carries the story of her Inuit owners and their contribution to the community they made as operators in the Arctic. The North Star is the last sailing representative of the Western Canadian Arctic fur trade and serves as a reminder of the success that Inuvialuit trappers had in that era.
As part of our Arctic Exhibition Revitalization plan, our goal is to create a one-of-a-kind floating exhibit that speaks directly to the Inuit experience. But we still need your help to make this historic project happen. We are a small charitable organization, so being able to respond to significant opportunities like this requires the support of the community. Not unlike the acquisition of the St. Roch, this is a pivotal moment for our institution. The unique and exciting opportunity to obtain the iconic vessel, the North Star of Herschel Island is a time sensitive and once in a lifetime event.
By donating before the November 30 deadline, you’ll be a vital part of ensuring the legacy of this vessel carries on for generations. Help us keep this historic ship in Vancouver so we may immerse students, kids and adults with Indigenous maritime heritage. 
This ship is a testament to Inuit ingenuity and survival and its stories deserve to be told alongside the St. Roch. Donate today and help acquire the North Star of Herschel Island!
Thank you for being an important part of the VMM community.  
Donate today!
P.S. We are excited to now offer special benefits to our donors. Use the button below to learn what your gift could mean for you!
View donor benefits
“We anchored near Tuktoyaktuk when we hit shallow water. A boat came out to welcome us and I saw that there were many white people in the boat and I thought there was only one Inuk with them but when they came up to our boat, it was the other way around. These people were all Inuit and there was only one white man with them.That was the first time I had ever heard Inuit talk English. The white man in the boat was the Hudson’s Bay Company manager” – From the Reminiscences of Joe Panipakuttuk, Inuit hunter and guide 
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