Who we are
The North American Carnival Museum and Archives (NACMA) is a diamond in the rough, a museum with enormous potential and an astonishingly beautiful and bizarre collection related to the outdoor entertainment industry. We are destined to be part keeper of artefacts that represent a complex and forgotten segment of North American social/agricultural history; part curio cabinet; part theatre in keeping with our theme; and part repository of unique resource materials for researchers and historians.
Exhibit NACMA has a large scale exhibit which is displayed at Carnivále Lune Bleue's Congress of Wonders Museum as it travels during the summer.
At this point, the museum collection and archives are open for viewing and research by appointment only. In the future we intend to house the collection in a large year round multi-use museum building that can accommodate diverse museum exhibits, collections, public education, performance art, and research.
Since the museum's inception in 2008, it has acquired more than 2,000 artefacts from Canadian and American sources which including Conklin Shows, independent show operators, individuals and Carnivále Lune Bleue. The archival collection consists of documents, film, sound recordings and photos numbering in the tens of thousands.
NACMA's collections includes: carnival paintings, posters, route books, diaries, promotional material, black and white photos, an electric chair, arcade machines, prizes, gaming equipment, clown paraphernalia, carousel horses, full size rides, etc.
The North American Carnival Museum and Archives is committed to the preservation, presentation and promotion of carnivals, circuses, fairs, expositions and amusement parks in North America. Exhibits, programming and research activities will be supported by a collection which includes artefacts, artwork, photographs, multimedia, and archival material.
The North American Carnival Museum and Archives will encourage a greater appreciation of the heritage of carnivals, circuses, fairs, expositions and amusement parks and their influence on our society -- social and cultural, historical as well as economic.
This will be accomplished by:
- Developing, collecting and preserving a world class collection of artefacts and archival material that is significant to North America and the world.
- Presenting the highest calibre of temporary and permanent exhibitions, which will communicate the various aspects of the carnival and circus history.
- Establishing and presenting creative, interactive performances and engaging programs that bring to life carnival and circus history and that stimulate in our visitors a lasting interest in this fascinating world.
- Disseminating accurate and relevant information about all aspects of carnivals, circuses, fairs and exposition history in North America and the world.
- Supporting and facilitating research by providing access to its collections for historians, teachers, students, journalists and any interested groups, individuals or organizations.
- Encouraging greater awareness through cooperation with museums and other interested organizations at the local, national and international level.
- Participating in various cultural, artistic and educational events to bring the Museum's collection to the community.
- Supporting projects and activities that will help the Museum in realizing its goals and objectives.
- Fund raising to help the Museum in realizing its goals and objectives.
- In a more general way, participating, developing, or accomplishing any action, activities or projects that would allow the Museum to accomplish its mission.