Object in Focus: Janvier Reducing Machine

Posted on Friday, March 11, 2016 by The Royal Mint Museum

reducing machine

The Museum's Janvier reducing machine on display at Llantrisant
In the Museum we have many objects that tell the story of coin and medal production. Some of the most fascinating are the reducing machines whose intricate mechanisms were once integral to the process of minting. ..

More

A Momentous Year for the Royal Mint Museum

Posted on Monday, January 11, 2016 by The Royal Mint Museum

Visitor Centre

The Museum staff on a tour of the Visitor Centre
Happy New Year and welcome to our 2016 blog. The Museum would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our supporters and to give you a brief summary of our Inventory Project along with a sneak preview of some of the exciting events coming up this year. ..

More

The Value of Small Change

Posted on Tuesday, October 06, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

1908 one cent coin

1908 Circulated aluminium East African one cent coin in a corroded state
During the course of the inventory project we have catalogued 17,500 overseas coins. Many of them are large and impressive but, as we have discovered, it is important not to overlook even small coins in poor condition as they can also tell a fascinating story. Recently we came across an intriguing collection of aluminium one cent coins from East Africa, dated 1908. They are light weight with a perforated centre and some of them are covered in a thick powdery white corrosion layer. These aluminium coins are the first of their kind produced by the Royal Mint and, although they appear to have little value, they represent adaptability, innovative science and a commitment to continuous improvement that had gained pace when Charles Fremantle was Deputy Master of the Royal Mint (1868-1894). ..

More

Writings on the Wall: Preserving the Prisoner Graffiti at the Tower of London

Posted on Tuesday, September 22, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

An electrotype of Prisoner graffiti from the Tower of London

Electrotype of prisoner graffiti at the Tower of London
Since completing a catalogue of the coinage, medal and seal material in the main store, we have taken the opportunity to look more closely at some of the remaining objects. Of particular interest was a set of boxes labelled ‘Tower of London’, containing a series of electrotypes featuring various inscriptions and ranging from crudely scratched names and dates, or tags, to lengthy passages of text and detailed artistic impressions.  ..

More

Object in Focus: Automatic Balance

Posted on Wednesday, August 26, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

automatic balance in the museum

The automatic balance in the Museum
Here at the Royal Mint Museum we are fortunate to have a large collection of objects that bring the history of coin production to life. However one particular artefact has caught our eye over the course of the Inventory Project. It is an automatic balance of the type introduced in the 1850s to weigh gold and silver coins. It is in working order and has a smooth and elegant action even after all these years of hard work. The coins make a pleasing sound as they are sorted, although originally they would have been collected in bags under the machine and made very little noise. Automatic balances were employed to weigh bullet cartridges as part of the Royal Mint’s contribution to the war effort, and the machine’s mechanism is fascinating to watch. But the real significance of this machine is that it represents the mass produced accuracy of the coinage produced by the Royal Mint. ..

More

Inventory Project Update

Posted on Friday, August 21, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

Coin cabinets in the Museum

Coin cabinets in the Museum
Since the last update from the Inventory Project we have been working to reorganise and catalogue more of the museum collection. The formidable job of recording the plaster models, rubber moulds and electrotypes is now complete. ..

More

Collection in Context

Posted on Friday, August 14, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

reducing machine

A Janvier reducing machine at work making a George VI half crown punch
If you have read previous blog posts about the Royal Mint Museum Inventory Project you will be familiar with the types of objects we have been handling, but you might not know how they were originally used. The plaster models, rubber moulds, electrotypes and punches in the Museum store each represent a stage in the process of transforming a design from a concept into a coin, medal or seal.  ..

More

Pistrucci's Bench

Posted on Friday, August 07, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

Pistrucci's work bench

Pistrucci's work bench in the Museum
There was an air of excitement about the Royal Mint Museum this week as we prepared to receive a very special object into the collection. As part of a reorganisation of the Royal Mint engraver’s workshop we were to transport a large wooden work bench into the Museum space. The work bench stands at approximately one metre high and one and a half metres wide. It is constructed of mahogany and pine and has evidently seen much use. There is nothing ostentatious about this bench. It is simple, elegant and above all, practical. So why is this unassuming object so special to us? ..

More

Pest Management Strategy

Posted on Friday, July 31, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

Housekeeping duties

One of our Collections Assistants carrying out weekly housekeeping duties
At the Royal Mint Museum, weekly housekeeping is an important part of our duties as collections assistants and much of this activity is aimed to control populations of insect pests. These pests such as silverfish and carpet beetle larvae can cause significant damage to the organic materials within the museum’s collection such as paper, textile and wood. As a large part of the museum’s collection consists of books, documents, framed art and wooden boxed objects we take this threat very seriously.  ..

More

Letters and Lions

Posted on Friday, July 17, 2015 by The Royal Mint Museum

piece punches in the collection before coating

Piece punches in the collection before coating
One of the highlights of the inventory project has been uncovering the hidden gems of the collection. When we recently finished reorganising all the smaller museum store spaces the collections assistants came across approximately 9,000 piece punches, dating from the 19th and 20th centuries. ..

More

1 2 Next

Welcome to the Royal Mint Museum Blog. Here you’ll get to meet the faces behind the Museum and find out how our hard-working team cares for this exceptional and varied collection. You’ll find entries on our favourite objects, how we’re looking after the objects, and the work being done to interpret and research the collection. You may also from time to time get a sneak preview of exciting projects and future exhibitions.


Follow us

RSS Subscribe to RSS feed


Recent posts


Tags


Categories


Archive