|Door to the storage area of the central archives for the British Museum.|
These amazing details are recorded for posterity at the British Museum archive, where Stephanie Clarke works single-handedly to maintain the museum's important history. The archive holds the actual steel casting of a bomb that hit the museum. She showed our group photographs of the metals gallery that was reduced to rubble by the blast as well as the letters written from the different locations of the permanent collection.
Stephanie receives 30 outside requests per day for information from the archive, not counting requests from museums staff and associated institutions, such as the British Library and the Natural History Museum, which were both previously a part of the British Museum.
|Old sign from when the British Library|
was a part of the British Museum.
The Lists of Establishment is an annual record of every employee of the museum, start date, and salary. This has been of special interest to those doing family histories. The archive holds about 6,000-7,000 photographs including stereoscopic images and a viewer, to give an excellent idea of the gallery space from 150 years ago in thrilling detail.
The archive also houses many drawings and documentation on the mid-19th century construction, projections which are amazingly accurate. Deeds for the various plots of land held and sold by the museum in its history, some very old and written in elaborate calligraphy with no punctuation and wax seals at the bottom. Others were typed on typewriters.
|The British Museum building.|