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The Carus Collection was collected and compiled by Great Lakes ship captain Edward Carus of Manitowoc over a period of more than 50 years. Captain Carus began his career on the Great Lakes sailing on schooners and spent many years as a captain for the Goodrich Line before retiring. During his career, he researched and recorded the maritime heritage of the areas where he sailed, particularly the western shore of Lake Michigan. Captain Carus worked for ten years with Edwin Schuette, also from Manitowoc, and Mr. Schuette also contributed to the collection. In 1937, Captain Carus had fallen on hard times, his wife was bedridden and they were in need of money. Although Captain Carus desired his extensive collection to stay in Manitowoc, neither the City of Manitowoc nor Mr. Schuette was willing to purchase it at the time. Instead, Henry N. Barkhausen purchased it and kept it in his personal collection for more than 40 years before donating it to the Wisconsin Maritime Museum in 1981, returning it to Manitowoc. Edwin Schuette passed his portion of the collection to his son, Henry Schuette, who then donated his portion to the museum in 1981 as well.
Search the Museum's collection of Manuscripts, including records, memorabilia, personal papers, diaries, and information on a wide variety of vessels.
Information regarding the collections, including research hours and policies, as well as the procedure for submitting research requests.
A list of databases and other online sources.
Prices and procedures for reproducing documents and images.
Information on what the Museum collects, the criteria for accepting items into the collections, and resources for obtaining appraisals.