Information and discussion on all aspects of British photographic history
The wealth of small regional museum collections provides a rich and vital link to maintaining research and development and many with surprising finds. For instance, the Wisbech and Fenland Museum in the Fenland town of Wisbech currently exhibits the original manuscript of "Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens.
The 1861 manuscript was bequeathed to the Wisbech and Fenland Museum in 1868 by Dicken’s friend, Chauncy Hare Townshend, in its original binding. Today, the museum has worked with Cambridge University Press to scan and reproduce the manuscript in book format for the first time.
The town which was described by the architectural historian Nikolaus Pevsner as having "one of the most perfect Georgian streets of England”, is also a popular historic site for the filming of costume dramas, and former home to the social reformer Octavia Hill and the anti-slavery abolitionist Thomas Clarkson.
Its photographic collections include:-
The images of the Smith, Ellis and parts of the Coates Collection are made available to researchers in albums of modern print and the museum is currently exploring an HLF bid to digitise the Coates Collection with a view to make them available on the internet.
The Lilian Ream Collection, not part of the museum collection, but part of preserving and developing oral history of Wisbech and the Fens comprises of 150-200,000 negatives, 2,500 of which can also be viewed online via the Cambridgeshire Archives and Library Service.
"So I called myself Pip" : Original manuscript of "Great Expectations" by Charles Dickens on display at the Wisbech and Fenland Museum - until 22 December 2012.
Image: The first page of "Great Expectations". Courtesy of Wisbech and Fenland Museum.
Comments are closed for this blog post