The Nonsuch was originally built as a merchant ship in 1650. The name refers to “none such,” meaning “unequalled.”
As you enter the Nonsuch Gallery, listen to Elder Louis Bird as he recounts a story of first contact between European explorers and the Omushkegowak (Swampy Cree) of Hudson Bay area. Then step back in time to 17th century Deptford, England where Nonsuch has recently docked after a 16-month voyage to what we now call Canada. Explore the buildings and board the ship!
Learn about how the original Nonsuch sailed from England in 1668 to trade for furs in Hudson Bay. The success of this trip encouraged investors to establish the Hudson’s Bay Company in 1670. Immerse yourself in the Nonsuch replica, built in England in 1968 to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the Hudson’s Bay Company. Built using hand tools of the 17th century, it is considered one of the finest replicas in the world, and sailed 14,000 kilometres of salt and fresh water before arriving at the Manitoba Museum in 1974.
Take a peek inside!
Visitors can choose to listen to an oral history from Elder Louis Bird (in English, French, or Cree) about the first ships entering Hudson Bay. Image ©Manitoba Museum/Ian McCausland
Use the telescope on the pier to explore the Nonsuch rigging in detail after spending some time aboard the ship. Image ©Manitoba Museum/Ian McCausland
Take the elevator in the HBC Gallery up to the Nautical Balcony to explore more of HBC’s nautical history alongside artifacts and specimens connected to HBC’s role in scientific collecting. Image ©Manitoba Museum/Ian McCausland
Make your event historic!
The Manitoba Museum is unique in Canada, as it is the only heritage and science centre to offer a combination of world-class history galleries along with a science gallery and planetarium theatre.
Host your next cocktail reception or dinner in the Nonsuch Gallery and enjoy a guided tour aboard the Nonsuch.