HIV – fighting fear with education

20 November 2015 by Matt

Matt and John Walter by a huge pink inflatable sculpture

The launch of the Pug Virus installation.

Not that long ago I met up with artist John Walter as he unveiled his Pug Virus at the Walker Art Gallery. The installation, a massive bright pink representation of the HIV Virus, got me thinking about how HIV and other sexually transmitted infections have been represented in Merseyside across the years.

Many people will remember the information campaigns of the mid 1980s which used icebergs, mountains and falling monoliths to shock and scare people into taking precautions against catching the HIV/AIDS virus. Some of them were documented in the Now+then display, at the Museum of Liverpool earlier this year. These ‘doom-laden’ fear-inducing adverts, shot in blues and greys and black, seem a far cry from the bright pink creation of John Walter. How did we get from one representation to the other?  Read more…

Family History Day – fun for all the family

18 November 2015 by Andrew

Handle World War One object at Family History Day

Handle World War One object at Family History Day

Karen O’Rourke, Curator of Urban and Military History at the Museum of Liverpool tells us how the Family History Day this Saturday 21 November, is the perfect family day out. Read more…

Things turn up in the strangest places…

16 November 2015 by Sharon

ornate clock

Silver plated clock dedicated to William Neale, Station Master at Riverside Station. Accession number MOL.2015.77

Riverside Station was a bustling station on the Liverpool waterfront between 1895 and 1971, built to transfer passengers from transatlantic liners onto trains bound for London and the South.

An article in The Liverpool Review on 1 February 1896 stated that:

“there is probably no passenger terminus in the kingdom so conveniently placed in relation to the sea, and the passenger traffic from port to port, as the Liverpool Riverside Station.”

We have several objects relating to the station in our collection including a signal box, station sign, drawings and tickets. We were recently offered this clock connected to the station, with a fascinating story behind it.  Read more…

6 Christmas gifts you’ll want on your list

13 November 2015 by Lisa

christmas-felt-wreath-decorationsStarted your feverish browsing for Christmas gift ideas? Fear not, yule* have no problems finding the perfect gift in our online shop, with prices to suit all budgets! We’ve picked our top 6 gifts to get you started…

*see what we did there?  Read more…

Family History Day: a very special resource

12 November 2015 by Karen O'Rourke

An example of a record from the King's Regiment database

An example of a record from the King’s Regiment database

In my last Family History Day blog, I talked about the experts who will be on hand to help our visitors with their research on all sorts of First World War subjects at our First World War family history day. However there is another “star of the show” – the King’s Regiment database. Read more…

Remembering Liverpool’s First World War

11 November 2015 by Karen O'Rourke

old photo of a soldier in uniform

Captain Frank Watson

This week we have been commemorating those who lost their lives in conflict. With the centenary of the First World War, this year we have naturally been thinking of that war and the impact that it had on Liverpool. As I mentioned in my last blog post, this year Liverpool City Council and Culture Liverpool have created the Liverpool Remembers trail, to accompany the Poppies: Weeping Window installation at St George’s Hall. The trail highlights a number of Liverpool stories from across the city.

It was great to see that many people who came to see the installation at St George’s Hall when it opened this weekend then followed the Liverpool Remembers trail panels across town to the Pier Head. What they probably won’t realise is just how much work goes into making a city-wide trail happen. Read more…

Follow the Liverpool Remembers poppy trail

9 November 2015 by Karen O'Rourke

Liverpool Remembers poppy trail logo

I was pleased to be asked to work with Liverpool City Council and Culture Liverpool on a trail, to accompany their Poppies: Weeping Window installation at St George’s Hall. Like many people, I was really excited when I heard that the artwork would be in the city during the Remembrance commemorations. I also thought it was very apt that it should be situated at St George’s Hall, where thousands of men had enlisted for the First World War, and where we now gather every year, to commemorate those who have lost their lives in conflict.

I hope that visitors to the Weeping Window will also explore the Liverpool Remembers trail panels that lead down to the Pier Head. Read more…

Remembering the women on Poppy Day

5 November 2015 by Sam

woman in uniform

Iris M Newbould, Women’s Land Army © Lee Karen Stow

Photographer Lee Karen Stow shares the story of another one of the women she met during the research for her exhibition Poppies: Women and War, which is currently on display at the Museum of Liverpool.

Don’t forget that Lee will be back at the Museum to hold a free photography workshop and tour of the exhibition on Saturday 14 November. Full details of this and other events are on our Remembrance events page.

“In Whitehall, London, a few strides north of the Cenotaph and the tomb to the unknown soldier is the Monument to the Women of World War II. This tall, bronze pillar, sculpted by artist John W Mills, is a giant coat rack. Seventeen types of uniform, representing the roles thousands of women undertook during the war, hang on coat hooks, symbolising their job done. Unveiled by the Queen in 2005, this monument of recognition was a long time coming.

One of the uniforms represents members of the 80,000-strong Women’s Land Army (WLA). Women like Iris Newbould, now aged 90. Iris is one of the few ‘Land Girls’ still around to share memories Read more…

Family History Day, a day to remember

2 November 2015 by Karen O'Rourke

Our expert Graham travels all the way from the South West to help with Machine Gun Corps queries

Our expert Graham travels all the way from the South West to help with Machine Gun Corps queries

Last week saw the launch of the Royal British Legion 2015 Poppy Appeal, focusing on ‘Memories of the Fallen’, and it seems fitting that we at the Museum of Liverpool begin to think about our own annual event, our First World War family history day, which takes place at the museum on Saturday 21 November 2015.

Each year we gather together a team of friends, from around the region (and often further afield). Read more…

Here there be witches?

30 October 2015 by Liz

Shoe discovered inside a wall during building works at the Everyman Theatre

Shoe discovered inside a wall during building works at the Everyman Theatre

At the Museum of Liverpool there’s currently a display to celebrate the Everyman Theatre’s year as RIBA Stirling Prize winner. One of the items on display is a shoe which was found inside a wall when the 1975-77 Everyman Theatre building was being demolished. The shoe appears to date from the period of construction in the 1970s, but how and why it was within the wall is shrouded in mystery.

It’s possible that this represents a modern re-invention of a historic practice of placing shoes inside walls of buildings as protection from witches.  Read more…

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