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Micromuseums Archive

The Micromuseums Archive opened at Bishopsgate Institute in March 2015 and houses materials relating to small independent museums in the UK. At present, the archive contains leaflets, booklets, and postcards that were collected by Dr Fiona Candlin in the course of her research, and we are actively seeking to develop these holdings.  

There are approximately 1300 small, independent museums (micromuseums) in the UK. They cover subjects as diverse as lawnmowers, lead mining, and Witchcraft and, in so doing, make an important contribution to our cultural life and history. The Micromuseums Archive aims at documenting these venues and at enabling future study in the area.

Instructions for use: 
The archive is accessible online via the Bishopsgate Library and Archive catalogue. Search by name to find individual museums or to view the whole collection on the catalogue, click here.

The archive can also be visited. To make an appointment contact library@bishopsgate.org.uk

Collecting: 
The items that we are interested in collecting include (but are not limited to):
· Photographs of museums (especially from the 1990s or earlier)
· Museum leaflets and booklets
· Postcards of museums and of museum exhibits
· Posters
· Collections registers and catalogues
· Correspondence
· Visitors’ books

We are particularly keen to receive materials from museums that have closed.

PLEASE NOTE: We are focusing on independent museums (that is museums that operate without state funding). We are unable to collect material relating to national museums (e.g. the British Museum), those funded by the Department of Culture, Media, and Sport  (e.g. the Geffrye Museum), local authority museums (e.g. Stoke City Museum), university museums or Historic England.

If you have anything that you think might be suitable and would be willing to give to the archive please contact Fiona on f.candlin@bbk.ac.uk
Alternatively, you can write to:
Fiona Candlin
Department of History of Art
Birkbeck, University of London
43 Gordon Square
London
WC1H 0PD