Man-O-War Heritage Museum

Preserving History & Heritage on a tiny Island.

Sooo…. close!


We are so close I can even smell the coffee cappuccino!!


Yes, that is our very first cappuccino with our new machine.  We are so grateful for the donation of this beautiful piece of equipment.   It is a very generous donation, but something we feel is essential to the coffee shop.

We have done SO much since our last blog post, and I want to bring you up to speed as best I can.

We left off last time with the sub floor going in, so we will start with the necessary pieces being put in to receive the beautiful Abaco Pine floor which was also donated by the mill in Marsh Harbour.  Billy has worked tirelessly on this project and he is the one who put in these necessary pieces.


The beautiful floor was delivered and the coffee shop floor was installed by Mark Albury.


Mark’s attention to detail is evident in his installation.


Doug and Warren worked their magic in installing the flooring in the front two rooms.  It just amazes me what these guys can do.  They were able to work with what they had and make it all beautiful in the end.  Remember they are working on a building that is over 80 years old! They are meticulous craftsmen!


We decided to keep the green wall to add a bit of character to the large room and we also wanted to save the history it brings to the project.  Earl Meeks worked on this old wall many days to patch and repair obvious holes and make it as sound as possible.


Earl also had some help from Peter Sweeting.


A few years back we found an old piece of wooden gutter, and knowing we would need it one day, we saved it.  Warren was able to piece together two “good” pieces of gutter, make wooden brackets and install it on the building.  Fine craftsmen working on our project!




Billy made and installed our concrete counters too!


With a little touch of island decor.  I mean, who doesn’t want sliced conch in their counter top!


So the painting is done, the floors are installed, the counter is in and its time to finish the floor.  Janine Andrews flew to MOW to do this.  It was a long, long, long, process.  Because Abaco pine is so hard, she went through SEVERAL sanding pads.  Pads for the big machine and for the hand held jobby. She was there 4 days for a good 12 hours or more each day.   And then in the end as a going away present, we gave her the flu!!  Janine’s work ethic is amazing.  She was determined to do the best possible job she could. And boy does it look amazing!  We are so grateful to her.


Hopefully she wont kill me for this photo, but it just shows how incredibly hard she worked to get the job done.


Billy did a lot of vacuuming before we put the stain on.


Here is a sneak peak at the finished floor.  It looks amazing.  Not too dark, and not too yellow as most pine tends to go.  Janine, Billy and I stained the entire floor.  Museum and Coffee shop.  Lots of work, but soooo worth it.


It is important to us to keep all the Sweetings involved in the process of rejuvenating their old homestead.  We were told by the girls just how much their mothers garden meant to her and ultimately to them. So we asked if they would like to plant a garden to honor their mother, Mrs. Venie, and they were so proud and honored to do it.  So they set a planting day and got busy.


Brenda, Linda, Celia and Robert come out to help with the plantings.


Its a lovely garden that will grow and mature beautify.  Roses were always in Mrs. Venies garden, so they planted some in her honor.


We have had our fair share of challenges along the way, but we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Pete has installed most of the plumbing and electrical and we are just about ready to go.

The “Museum” part of the building is just empty rooms right now, so there isnt much to show, but that is really where my passion lies, so just as soon as we get the coffee shop open I plan to re-focus on that.  Its truly a labor of love.  As the world around us changes daily, its comforting to know the past is carefully tucked away, just waiting to be rediscovered.  Man-O-War is such a treasure and we love sharing the rich history of the island with everyone.  Our docents are patiently waiting and new ideas are being discussed daily.  I have heard over and over what a nice addition the new Museum and coffee shop will be to the island, and that warms my heart.

I have deliberately left out large overall photos in the hopes that you will be curious enough to want to see all of it in person. We will be waiting with hot coffee and tea and possibly a sweet or two.

Until then, Happy New Year from all of us!

****If you would like to make a donation to this very worth while project, please contact me at or if you would like to make a tax deductible donation to our 501.c.3 you can click HERE ****


Author: Man O War Heritage Museum

4 thoughts on “Sooo…. close!

  1. Due to arrive Feb 3. Can’t wait to see it all.

  2. Hi Chana,

    The place is really shaping up! Billy did a great job on the counters and floors and what a sweet photo of the Sweeting family. I know how anxious you are to have the place open. Your going to do a great job and it will be a huge success. I’m looking forward to a visit in person! Best wishes and positive thoughts!

    Barbara Sent from my iPad


  3. Love it love it! See you soon. Booked back the 27Jan xo

    Nancy Clement’s iPhone


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