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"The Banks Collection" museum exhibit label

Captain's Corner

Captain Blake Banks was a successful Cortez fisherman with a passion for sea life. His collection is well documented, making it especially important academically. All of his specimens were collected in the Gulf of Mexico, some of which were eventually
donated to the museum by his widow, Betty. 


Like Captain Banks, explorers of all ages can become a marine scientist for the day with our new seashell discovery kits.

Close-up image of boat model

Main Gallery

Located in the historic fishing village of Cortez, the Florida Maritime Museum's permanent exhibits highlight local fishing history from native cultures to early settlers and modern commercial fisheries.


The permanent exhibit gallery at FMM also features displays on maritime navigation, boat building, and tools used in boat construction, as well as the history of the FMM building, a former schoolhouse.

Shelves of books

FMM is home to a small library of books on maritime topics that range from tales of old Florida to boat building and design. Guests are welcome to peruse the library during regular business hours, or online

In addition to books, FMM houses a collection of boat plans, nautical charts and other archival materials that are available for scholarly research by appointment.

Anchor 1

Maritime Library



Thank you to the Bradenton Area Convention and Visitor's Bureau for supporting this exhibit.

Caught in the Storm- 100 Years of Florida Hurricanes logo

Learn about the fascinating history of hurricanes in Florida.


The indoor portion of this exhibit showcases a timeline of the hurricanes that made direct contact with Florida land between the period of 1919 and 2019. Explore historic and modern photos, relatable statistics, personal stories, and test your knowledge with hurricane trivia.  

In the outdoor component, flooding is put into context by showing on our building the storm surge heights from notorious storms across the state. Outdoor exhibit panels are placed around the exterior of the 1912 schoolhouse at the museum.

Click here to view the online version!

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