Snapshots from the past

Yesterday my volunteer Veronica and I put away some interesting objects called magic lantern slides. Lantern slides were a popular tool used in the early days at Manchester Museum for lectures and presentations. Most of the slides were of photographs of parasitology, in particular the protist Plasmodium responsible for Malaria, but there are also anatomical drawings, photos of insects and marine dwelling creatures. The slides are housed in small cabinets with custom built drawers, as you can see in the picture below. Many of the slides were not properly housed or had not been put away after being digitised for an online gallery. They are made of glass and are therefore very fragile. It was our job to make sure the slides were safely housed.

We had great fun looking through all the amazing images from the past, including photos of extinct animals such as the Quagga. Many of the photographs were stained with colour, such as this one. The label read “what was found in the box!”:

Wish I knew the story behind that caption!


About Gina Allnatt

I have just finished a year long traineeship as a Biology Curator at Manchester Museum. I am currently a research and curation volunteer in the Entomology and Botany departments. -Gina Allnatt
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