Services and Resources for Museums and Private Collectors
Museum and Collector Resource partnered with the Martha's Vineyard Museum during a period of pivotal institutional change as the museum readied itself for a move that would increase its physical size and its capacity to serve islanders and visitors. From 2012 to 2014, MCR staff members worked to assist in new facility planning, cataloging the collection, which ranges from maritime artifacts and tools to ship models and archaeology, and creating a space assessment to inform construction and renovation needs. MCR assisted the Martha’s Vineyard Museum in preparing for a large collection move into their new facility in Vineyard Haven. In the fall of 2018, MCR packed and moved the object, library, and archives collections from the previous campus in Edgartown to the new campus. MCR unpacked and arranged the collections in Vineyard Haven, where we also planned the new object storage spaces. More recently, MCR has provided registration assistance and worked on MVM's collaborative preservation projects with their community partners.
In early 2019, MCR began working with Boston's Museum of African American History to re-organize and optimize their collection storage spaces. MCR worked alongside MAAH's staff to guide them in creating record retention schedules for their institutional archives. MCR also sorted, organized, re-housed, and arranged their institutional archives, including developing finding aids. We trained and supervised museum interns, who helped MCR staff with a complete overhaul of the storage layout, organizing the collection, cataloging and re-housing objects in line with best practices for museum storage, and updating and reconciling database records. MCR assisted museum collections staff in choosing new storage furniture to improve the space in the future by making recommendations and liaising with vendors. After the success of the Boston project, MAAH asked MCR back to repeat the process for their Nantucket collection storage spaces in 2020 and 2021.
In January 2020, MCR staff began a year-long project to catalog, number, and photograph the previously unmanaged collection of the historic Vanderhoop homestead in Aquinnah on the island of Martha's Vineyard. The house serves as the museum for the Aquinnah Cultural Center of the Wampanoag Tribe of Gay Head (Aquinnah). MCR helped the Cultural Center board select a collections database, acquire supplies, and develop collections criteria. In addition to cataloging the entire historic house collection, MCR staff rehoused and reorganized collections in storage to reflect museum best practices and trained board members and an intern on using the database, processing new accessions, and cataloging oral histories. In 2021, MCR returned to perform a collections assessment as part of a National Endowment for the Humanities Preservation Assistance Grant-funded project. MCR staff gathered comprehensive data on the museum environment and current collection conditions and began to train board members in climate monitoring methods.
In spring 2013, Museum & Collector Resource began cataloging and researching artifacts for installation in the new Edward M. Kennedy Institute. Working with the staff and members of the Kennedy family, MCR selected a database, developed storage plans, and cataloged the collection. MCR also conducted the planning and installation of the Senator’s recreated office from Capitol Hill in the museum. In 2016 MCR was involved in strategic planning for the collections at the Kennedy Compound House in Hyannis Port. MCR supervised interns and completed a collections assessment for the Kennedy Compound House, including climate monitoring and analysis.
Starting in 2012, MCR was asked to assist in the planning, move, and preservation of a collection of historical artifacts and art objects belonging to H. Ross Perot, Sr. MCR initially conducted a space assessment to determine what size exhibit and storage spaces were needed within a new corporate headquarters in the Dallas area. This information was used by the architects, exhibit designer, and the Perot family to plan the new building. In 2014 MCR returned to catalog and photograph the collection as well as oversee conservation on a number of objects. In 2017 MCR completed the move and installation of the collection. At present we continue to act as registration staff for the Perot Estate and are preparing for the appraisal of the collection.
The Barbican Centre, City of London • Amaze Design • The Cahoon Museum of American Art • The H.L. Ferguson Museum • Nahant Historical Society • Liberty Mutual Insurance Company • Tougaloo College • Lynn Museum & Historical Society • Cape Ann Museum • Tufts University Art Galleries • Little Compton Historical Society • Blithewold Mansion, Gardens, and Arboretum • The Town of Boylston, MA • The Bostonian Society • The Boston Public Library • The T. Boone Pickens Collection • Worcester Historical Museum • Beverly Historical Society • The Longyear Museum • The MIT Museum • The Art Complex Museum