Maryland Museum Investigates Mythology of Mermaids

Advertisement for P.T. Barnum's Feejee mermaid (Alyssa Maloof Photography/Mermaid Museum)

New Maryland Museum Dives Into the Mythology of Mermaids

by Isis Davis-Marks/

Mermaids loom large in popular imagination, appearing in films like Disney’s The Little Mermaid and splashing across the logos of Starbucks coffee cups. Despite their iconic status, no museum dedicated to these mythical, sea-dwelling creatures existed on the East Coast of the United States—until now.

As Matthew Prensky reports for the Salisbury Daily Times, the aptly titled Mermaid Museum opened in Berlin, a small town in southern Maryland, this March. The space aims to highlight the history of mermaids by displaying artifacts and artworks associated with the fictional finned beings.

“Even though we know so much more about the sea, we are still compelled by the myth of the mermaid,” says poet Nancy Mitchell, who worked on the museum with founder Alyssa Maloof, to Deana Harley of WMDT. “… She was a creature that wedded two worlds, and she was also a creature of the sea, and she was beyond all the rules of society, … beyond the rules of man.”

Fittingly, notes Baylor Spears for Washingtonian, the 2,200-square-foot venue is located about ten miles inland from Ocean City. Six of the space’s walls are dedicated to tracking mermaid sightings from the first century C.E. to as recently as 2017. Read More:


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