Temporarily misplaced

Scouring the archives, and receiving an unexpected package, help our documentation officer Sarah Joomun in her investigations into the Museum’s Lyell collection of fossil material.

Read more on the latest post from Past to Present…

Past to Present

When I started work on the Lyell project in July of this year, I was very keen to know more about the history of the collection, both before and after it arrived at the museum. Collections often arrive at the Museum with associated material such as catalogues, letters or notebooks and after they arrive any activity related to the collection should be documented.

The first step in investigating the history of the collection was to find out what was in the Museum’s records. I began by looking at the donors database; this recorded the date that the Lyell collection arrived (1903) and the donor, Sir Leonard Lyell, Charles Lyell’s nephew. There was a little more information in the donors card index, which mentioned the fact that the collection came in two parts, the bulk of the collection in 1903 and then additional Italian specimens in 1907. The Collections Manager, Eliza…

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