The museum is situated in Campo Marconi, near the historical centre. The building stands on the old walls of Franciscan monastery and it was built in 1314. During the war between Venice and Genoa, in 1379, the monastery was seriously damaged and it was rebuilt in 1434. It was deconsecrated in 1806 and then it was used for many purposes.
The museum is divided into three floors: the ground floor hosts archaeological finds, from Bronze Age to the 4th century A.D.. A series of panels in the room gives a general view of the change of the environment, from Bronze Age to 1740, on north and south of Chioggia. Reconstructive models and panels show the oldest findings. They were found in the site of Cavanella court during the 1980s. An area is dedicated to amphoras, from the 1st century b.C. to the 3rd century A.D. In the museum there is also an area dedicated to Bebe site: the finds were recovered in this site by archaeological group ”Fossa Clodia“.
The first floor is dedicated to Cristoforo Sabbadino, famous engineer who worked for Serenissima Repubblica di Venezia during the 16th century, and conserve findings from the 12th century to the 17th century. In this floor there is also the historical local archive which hosts documents from 1246, time of the first medieval statutes, illuminated parchment code and ”mariegole“ serial. Two big views drown by Cristoforo Sabbadino in 1557 are on the right side of the room: one is a map of Chioggia and the other is hydraulic plan.
The second floor is dedicated to maritime affairs, fisheries and local shipyard; it has been fit out with private collections of two citizen of Chioggia. The items shown in this room belong to the period from 1700 till today. There is a section dedicated to wood and wood works to build the local boat. In the middle of the room models show all phases of construction of ”Bragozzo“, typical boat from Chioggia, in the shipyard. In the second wings there is a section dedicated to the fishing nets, sails, floating cork or glass, and hanging on the wall, the only specimens of ”Penelo“, the famous weathervane of local production that was collocated on the top of the mainmast. Local pipes, dating from the 17th century to 1950s, are in a showcase. There are dioramas: one shows ”squero“, shipyard where the boats are built, and three dioramas describe the different types of fishing in lagoon.
A collection of paintings by local artists, from the 18th to the 19th century, are situated in the central wing of the third floor, but there are also two pictures, one dated 1381 and the other 1436, and a fresco dated first half of the 15th century.