Penneshaw Maritime and Folk Museum

The Hog Bay School built 1869 is now a Maritime and Folk Museum.

The Penneshaw Maritime and Folk Museum occupies the building once known as the Hog Bay Public School, which operated from 1869 to 1967. The current building, erected in 1922, was preceded by a number of other smaller and more modest structures; two of these were built by members of the community as the government believed that a more substantial school house was not warranted until the 1890s, owing to the small population of children in the district. During the late 1800s, and the early 1900s, the commercial centre of Penneshaw was situated between the school and Christmas Cove, rather than where the township is located today.

The museum comprises three separate rooms, each dedicated to a specific historic theme. The School Room showcases photographs and objects that reflect a bygone era in education within this remote, rural community. In the Maritime Room, the history of both the sealing and whaling industry, and commercial shipping activities, are depicted by models, images, and artefacts. The McKenzie Room conveys to the visitor a sense of island life; highlighting the isolation experienced by earlier settlers, and celebrating the pioneering spirit that has been integral to the development and identity of the local community. Outside the museum, in the courtyard, a lifeboat from the S.S Karatta is further testimony to the community’s close association with the sea, and a grinding mill used to crush stone for the production of china is evidence of early industry on the island.

The museum was first opened in 1968 by a group of dedicated local people under the direction of Keith and Margot McKenzie. The donation of numerous personal historical items enabled the committee to develop the informative displays which commemorate our history and identity, and the museum continues to be strongly supported by the community today.


Plan your Visit

Penneshaw Maritime and Folk Museum


Howard Drive
Penneshaw, Kangaroo Island 5222 SA


Museum closed from 1/6/23
Will reopen 1/10/23
Cruise Ship Visits will be 9:30am - 2:30pm on each Cruise Ship Day
With exceptions for tour groups and appointments.
Please contact Joy Willson on 0438 876 811.

Appointments can be made by ringing 0438876811.

Entry Fees:

Adults $5.00, Child $3.00, Family $10.00