Public History Review Essay: The Black Country Living Museum

Benson, John
June 2001
Labour History Review (Maney Publishing);Summer2001, Vol. 66 Issue 2, p243
Academic Journal
The article focuses on the Black Country Living Museum in Dudley, England. The museum was established in 1975 on a twenty-six acre site at Dudley. Its aims were to collect, preserve, research and display items relating to the social and industrial history of the Black Country area in England and to arrange exhibitions, lectures, displays and publications. The museum celebrated its twenty-fifth anniversary in 2000. The museum is now able to show "how people lived and worked in the area from the beginning of the eighteenth century to the present day." Upon arrival, one is directed first into the Black Country Hall of Fame, a room with displays devoted to business, entertainment, sport and so on. One moves next into a small ante-room where one watches a short filmed introduction to the museum narrated by a "typical" Black Country worker. The region, he points out, owed a great deal to the brass, glass and nail-making industries. The museum enhances the historical awareness of many thousands of casual visitors.


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