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Spinning off some articles from the Grey Roots collection

·2 min read

Home spun. The clothes and the stories and the tools and the fun of residents in Grey County in days gone by were, all of them, home-spun.

But there comes a time that a rural museum looks at its collection and says – it’s time to spin some of these items off.

Right now, there are 41 spinning wheels that have little or no relevance to Grey County that are among items to be “de-accessioned” as they say in the museum world.

Other items on the list include a George White steam traction engine that has a boiler that was condemned in 2009. Grey Roots has a fully functioning Robert Bell steam engine which is displayed and in working order so that it can be used for demonstrations at events.

Many items came into the collection before Museum standards, and decisions were made based on the curator’s background and knowledge available about the item at the time, said the report from curator Sim Salata that came before Grey County Council on Oct. 14.

Perhaps they have only a remote connection with the history of the county. Perhaps they aren’t in good condition. Maybe they are duplicates – or more.

The spinning wheels came from many corners of Canada and the world: Germany, Norway, India, Turkey, New Zealand, Nova Scotia, Manitoba, Quebec, Acton, Strathroy and elsewhere.

Those interested in the history of textiles and domestic production should know that eight spinning wheels are being kept that have strong connections to Grey County. Some of these are in active use at the Moreston Heritage Village.

The items being excluded from the collection include, among others, hand seeder, parasol, top hat, hay knife, boudoir cap, buck saw, Christmas tree ornament, windshield wiper blade, derringer, coffee pot and ice chisel.

Items removed from the collection are offered to other museums or public non-profit groups, and any that are not taken will be offered by public auction, except the firearms.

Any revenue will be placed in the reserve for new acquisitions, the report said.

M.T. Fernandes, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Dundalk Herald

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