As Hurricane Matthew battered the coast of Charleston, South Carolina, it dredged-up a few reminders of a previous and more violent affair. While walking the shoreline on Folly Beach Island, a local resident discovered 16 Civil War artillery shells that washed ashore in the wake of Matthew. News outlets reporting the story used words like “uncovered, discovered, unearthed, and revealed” in their headlines. Sadly, such words only told half the story. Read more
When you introduce a new item to your collection, your first goal should be record management. Records should include photographic documentation combined with written details that will provide you and future caretakers with the state of the object’s original condition, provenance, value, and location. Your second goal (and responsibility) is to ensure the object’s long-term safety and preservation while in your care.