I'd been to the SEM several times two to five years ago and, while it was ok it did not really grab my interest. There was too little to see and what was there was not well presented. In fact, it didn't feel like a museum at all. It felt like a conglomeration of old stuff from someone's attic which was presented haphazardly and in no particular order.
Well, it's not that way anymore. When I walked in there about a week ago I was delighted to see changes. It's become much more well organized and the displays were presented thoughtfully. It's become a museum with a lot to say about the area (the Northern Neck of Virginia) during the era in which steamboats plied the Chesapeake Bay and the Tidewater Rivers.
All the displays were not yet finished. It's evident that this is a work in progress, but it is progressing in the right direction big time!
It's a very nice small museum and certainly worth a visit.
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