Following my foray into the Geology collection at Manchester, I’ve been entering the location of some of the fossil corals onto the museum collection management system KE EMu – honestly, its not as dull as it sounds.
Its no use having a lovely collection if none of it can be found when needed. It often falls to volunteers to enter this vital information but going through this process is a good way of finding your way around a collection. At Manchester, the fossils are organised by taxonomy and after working through a section, you can start to recognise some of their characteristics, particularly when working directly from the objects.
Before I started there was one entry only for each drawer-full. I created an individual record for each specimen and linked it to the parent drawer record.
There are about 100,000 fossils and 40,000 rocks and minerals in the stores at Manchester Museum. After a day’s work we know where a few more drawers-full of them are and I know a bit more about Cnidaria.