Shelburne Museum

Log Number: MA-245455-OMS-20

Shelburne Museum will conduct an inventory and assessment of the contents in their pharmaceutical collection, which consists of medicinal products, cosmetics, and patent medicines. This project will address the unknown details about the contents of the collection, and enable staff to accurately quantify safety concerns, such as inhalation of or exposure to unknown contents and/or broken containers. There are about 5,000 containers dating from the mid-19th to early 20th century that may have become unstable over time. Project staff will upload the data gathered during the inventory to a collections management system and generate reports to share with a consulting chemical hygienist who will provide input for the next phase: identifying unknown contents and safe removal of hazardous contents from historic containers. This will determine how much of the collection is safe to keep, and what objects will require special handling or should be disposed of in the future.