Maritime Museum of BC, 986.027.0001-0002, 001.018.0001
It is hard to show visitors the Tilikum these days in its current storage facility. You can, on the other hand, view many pieces of Tilikum artwork online. This large piece (001.018.0001) was donated to the museum by the Thermopylae Club, an organization that was vital in the Tilikum’s relocation and restoration.
This piece shows the vessel’s iconic bowsprit crashing against the waves. However, this historic element is unlikely to have ever been used during its original voyages. As can be seen in paintings 986.027.0001-0002, the Tilikum’s current bowsprit was not original. The first bowsprit, which painted red, was added on during the vessel’s conversion from a dugout canoe in 1902. After sitting derelict on the Thames River, it was restored with this new bowsprit we recognize.