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Family connection to Empress of Ireland inspires art student

25 November 2014 by Jen

Artwork by Jessica Cain inspired by the Empress of Ireland sinking

Artwork by Jessica Cain inspired by the Empress of Ireland sinking

One the most interesting aspects of working in museums is getting to hear people’s stories and explore the personal side of historic events, including the impact they often still have today.

The sinking of the Empress of Ireland on 29 May 1914 was one of the worst maritime disasters of the twentieth century. Though overshadowed now by the loss of Titanic and Lusitania this sinking resulted in more passenger deaths than either of those more famous tragedies, with a loss of 840 passengers and 172 members of crew. Many of the crew were from the Liverpool area so, like Titanic before it and Lusitania in the following year, the tragedy had strong local connections and was keenly felt in the city. Read more…

Studying the Vikings

24 November 2014 by Liz

looking at the hoard

Each year the Huxley Hoard of Viking Silver makes a special outing from its display case to be studied by students from the University of Liverpool’s Irish Studies department. Read more…

Guest blog by the first member of our Patrons’ Circle

24 November 2014 by Laura

Gallery

Lady Lever Art Gallery © Fotography

In a guest blog by a very special member of our Patrons’ Circle, Juliet Staines tells us a bit more about why she loves the Lady Lever Art Gallery and what it means to be a patron. Read more…

The ‘Thomas Splint’ – UK Disability History Month

21 November 2014 by Kay

Splint with long sticks and padded ends for attaching to a leg, in museum display case

The Thomas Splint on display in the Museum of Liverpool. Lent by the Thackray Museum, Leeds

The theme of this year’s UK Disability History Month, 22 November – 22 December, is War and Impairment: The Social Consequences of Disablement.

With the 100th anniversary of the start of the First World War, the treatment of war disabled people casts a long shadow, with the unprecedented number of newly disabled people created by the world’s first industrial and total war.

We have on display in The People’s Republic gallery, Museum of Liverpool, this splint known as a ‘Thomas Splint’ after its inventor Hugh Owen Thomas (1834 – 1891). Thomas was a surgeon from North Wales, who treated many people in Liverpool’s slums.  Read more…

Last chance to see John Moores Painting Prize

20 November 2014 by Laura

Painting

‘Every minute you are closer to death’ by Hynek Martinec

Where else can you see 69,104 miniature human figures crammed onto one canvas, a visual depiction of the moves made in a game of chess played by the Dada artist Duchamp, an elderly woman engulfed by a transcendental white light from a chest freezer and the eerie corpse of a young deer languishing on a dining table?  Read more…

Watches of a couple separated by the Titanic

19 November 2014 by Jen

Gold pocket watches belonging to Thomas and Ada Hewitt

These gold watches belonged to Thomas and Ada Hewitt; they were given to each other as gifts on their wedding day in 1902

A pocket watch belonging to a Liverpool man who died in the Titanic tragedy and his wife’s fob watch have been added to the award winning Titanic and Liverpool: the untold story exhibition. Displayed next to each other, the two gold watches of Thomas Hewitt and his wife Ada were exchanged by the couple as gifts on their wedding day in September 1902. Read more…

“An inspiration to the people of Liverpool and beyond”

19 November 2014 by Lucy Johnson

Framed painting of Edward RushtonNick Young, teacher from the Royal School for the Blind, tells us about how Edward Rushton, whose story is currently being told in Unsung displays and events across the city as part of DadaFest International 2014, continues to be an inspiration to the school:

“Every family has its treasures and keepsakes that remind them of where they have come from and possibly point a way to the future. The legacy of Edward Rushton is no exception. Our school is rightly proud to have Rushton amongst its founders. His philanthropy, philosophy and integrity in the face of opposition, particularly in relation to the slave trade, remain an inspiration to the people of Liverpool and beyond. Read more…

Top three Liverpool gifts for Christmas

17 November 2014 by Stacey

Front cover imageWith Christmas a matter of weeks away our Museum of Liverpool shop team has selected their top three Liverpool gifts to help take the stress out of present-hunting for all true and honorary Scousers. Our top three Liverpool gifts are… Read more…

New Brighton – mecca for photographers

17 November 2014 by Sam

old photograph of families taking donkey rides on New Brighton beach

Keith Medley Archive Liverpool John Moores University

In many ways New Brighton is no different from many other seaside towns. In its heyday it was a bustling resort with people outnumbering pebbles on the beach. This glorious time is captured in fantastic photographs from the Keith Medley archive at Liverpool John Moores University, which are now on display in the Our day out exhibition at the Museum of Liverpool. The photographs are accompanied by reminiscences by Liverpool people of visiting the resort, getting sand in your sandwiches, wearing knotted hankies on your head to avoid getting burnt and dashing for the last ferry home.

These fond memories are perhaps even more poignant when you consider the changes of fortune that have affected New Brighton since those golden days. Read more…

Raise the Titanic! …to the second floor

14 November 2014 by Jen

Titanic Model Case Being Dismantled

Dismantling the case

One of National Museums Liverpool’s most iconic objects – the Titanic builder’s model, has been on the move.  It has been on display for the last 8 years in the Titanic, Lusitania and the Forgotten Empress gallery. This gallery is now closed and will open again in March 2015 as a new gallery Lusitania: Life, Loss, Legacy.  The Titanic model has been moved up to the second floor to our award winning exhibition Titanic and Liverpool: the untold story.

But hang on a minute, just imagine the preparation and planning that goes into moving a very large (6 metres long, 1 metre wide, 1 metre tall), heavy (over half a ton), old (built in 1910), fragile (some parts are made from paper and card), and valuable object like this! For the last few months, colleagues from across divisions (Registration, Curatorial, Estates Management, Ship and Historic Models Conservation, Ship Keeping and Engineering, Exhibitions, Visitor Services) have been working hard on putting in place the logistics to ensure that the model was moved in the best and safest way possible: Read more…

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Welcome to the National Museums Liverpool blog! Written by our staff and volunteers, we’ll give you a peek behind the scenes of our museums and galleries.

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We try to ensure that the information provided on our blog is accurate and that appropriate permissions to use images have been sought. The opinions in each blog are very much those of the individuals writing.