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Archive for the ‘collections’ Category

A Big Farewell

December 16th, 2011

 Sarah Forsyth (second from the left)
Today is a sad day for us as we say a final farewell to one of our team, Sarah Forsyth, our curator of collections.   It’s hard to believe that 5 years ago Sarah started as a part time employee working at both the Goulbourn Museum and Nepean Museum.  Shortly afterwards Sarah was made a permanent employee of the Goulbourn Museum and has been with us ever since.  During these past years Museum has undergone many changes and Sarah has been with us through them all, always weathering whatever challenge that comes her way with a candid sense of humour and great success.  To say she has been a vital part of our museum is an understatement.  
Coffee runs, artefact foraging, museum re-arrangements and staff training will never be the same.  Our team will experience a great loss in her absence. 
We’ll Miss You Sarah!  All the best in your new endeavours.

The Museum Ladies

You can leave any farewells or comments for Sarah on our Facebook page

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Our ‘Modern’ Dictionary

August 2nd, 2011


Last week, I stumbled upon a treasure. I picked up a rather non-descript looking book, meaning that it resembled a great many other books in any community museum collection; neither small nor large, brown leather creased and cracked cover which had become detached, the lettering on the spine faded. Lifting off the detached front cover of the book, I read the main title – “The Modern Dictionary of Arts and Sciences” (which in this year of 2011, made me chuckle) and then the sub title – “ Or Complete System of Literature” (to which my first reaction was “oh, because those two titles soooo go together….NOT!)

Right there, the titles intrigued me; told me this was a book worth looking into. Ideas and concepts change over time and if I run across a concept which does not make sense to me now, after a little research I find out that it did…at one time. Upon further examination of the book, 3 other details leapt out at me, one after the other. No. 1 – The paper was not wood pulp paper, but a beautiful (though stained) heavy, rag paper. No.2 – The ‘blocks’ of printing on each page were not identical, some of them were off, or slanted and the letters themselves were not perfectly identically even. And No. 3 – Throughout the book, most of the letter ‘s’ were written as a stylized ‘f’, which means (since the book was printed in England) that it was printed before 1810, which is when they stopped using this style of printing.

After more research, only one original printing date surfaced, all the way from the National Library of Australia. The Modern Dictionary of Arts and Sciences Or Complete System of Literature was printed in 1774.

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Preserving The McCoy Scrapbooks for the future

July 11th, 2011

Original scrapbook pages
Reproduction scrapbook pages

As Curatorial Assistant at the museum this summer, one of my tasks has been to digitize and re-create our McCoy Scrapbook collection…
          

These scrapbooks were created, and donated to the museum by local history enthusiast Mildred McCoy, a resident of Richmond. Who cut out articles from area papers pertaining to the lives of Goulbourn residents. There are 23 books in all, spanning the years 1907 to 1987. The articles cover a variety of topics from births, deaths, and marriages to municipal politics, local businesses, and church groups. The books are indexed by last name, so looking up articles on a specific person is easily done.
                

Due to the age of the books, many pages were falling a part and in poor condition, or the newspaper clippings were becoming too dark to read. In order to preserve the information held in each book the museum decided to have all the articles scanned, printed, and placed in to new scrapbooks using acid free pages and glue. As soon as all the books have been reproduced, the originals will be put away in storage, and the re-productions will be used for reference and research.
            
So far 9 scrapbooks have been preserved …This is an important project for the museum since it will allow future generations to read the stories of their families and communities…For me personally, I have found my grandma’s birth announcement, great grandparents wedding announcement, and an article on my great grandfathers death while working on the scrapbooks…You should stop in and take a look…you never know what you might find.

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