Museum makes progress on recording collection

The North Otago Museum is working through a backlog of acquisitions in the hope of eventually ending a three-year moratorium on accepting new items.

The moratorium, introduced in August 2010 because the museum and archives was running out of storage space, has been continued by the Waitaki District Council for another year until the end of July 2014.

Museum acting director Chloe Searle said progress had been made on listing the object store, improving storage of collections and rationalising collections.

However, the lack of space in the archives and storage stores remained and the moratorium would be needed until a long-term storage solution was found.

In the meantime, the museum would decline to take additional items, apart from the most exceptional of community objects.

Since a registrar on a fixed-term contract was employed in March last year, 2336 items had been processed and the acquisitions backlog, built up over five years, had been cleared.

Another 1870 items had been inventoried in the object store, which contained 10,603 items.

Items that did not fit within the collection management policy were being removed and new shelving was being bought to make best use of available space.

The inventory should be completed by the end of March next year, Ms Searle said.

A project to record and rehouse the collection of 8820 maps and plans would be completed this month.

Volunteers had been going through the photograph collection and removing any poor-quality duplicates during the updating of the catalogue and scanning.

A joint project between the museum and Oamaru Library was removing newspaper clippings from the archive and making them available in the library's public reference collection, making a limited amount of space available in some archive boxes.

The book collection in the archive was being reviewed and rationalised, she said.



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