Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Clare Museum seeks to expand its collection

Clare Museum in Ennis is seeking donations of items to expand its collection and to achieve greater representation of the lives of people in Clare for future generations to enjoy.

In 2015, Clare Museum adopted a new Collection Policy to help the museum achieve its mission through focussed collecting. It also recognises the collection as the museum’s greatest resource.

According to the policy, Clare Museum will collect items that exist in or can be provenanced to County Clare. For example, in this Decade of Centenaries items relating to Clare during the revolutionary period of a century ago, the First World War or the Spanish Flu of 1918/1919 would be very welcome.

However, items from more recent decades are also required. A survey of museum visitors conducted recently has highlighted a gap in the museum collection: the museum lacks everyday items from the 1960s to the turn of the century that many of our visitors remember and would like to show their children or grandchildren when on a visit to the museum.

Items of interest could also include functional equipment such as old phones, including mobile phones, calculators and other information technology, though they would need to be in good condition. Also, the museum collection is particularly short of children’s toys from days gone by.

The museum is also keen to be representative of local communities often overlooked in collections, including objects relating to the everyday lives of women and children, the travelling community, immigrants, and the disabled.

The profile of the County has changed in recent years, and now a large number of people in Clare come from or have a cultural connection to other countries. It is important to represent the cultural diversity of Clare in order to meet our socially inclusive mission. Items and ephemera reflecting the lives in Clare of these immigrant communities would also be welcome.

The Collection Policy is available on the museum’s website at http://www.clarelibrary.ie/eolas/claremuseum/about/Collections_Policy_for_Clare_Museum_2014-2019.pdf for the consultation of anyone interested in donating an item. For further information, museum curator John Rattigan can be contacted at 065-6823383 or at claremuseum@clarecoco.ie.

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