The Walbrook, one of the lost rivers flowing beneath London’s streets, is a time capsule of Roman Londinium. For over 170 years, archaeologists have dug astonishingly well-preserved artefacts of the ancient city out of the waterlogged earth of the stream. A new display at the Museum of London, Working the Walbrook, uses this collection of tools and other everyday objects to examine what life was like for ordinary Roman Britons. Let’s hear from Owen Humphreys, whose research underpins the display.
The River Thames flowed through London before the city was even built, and its waters have swallowed up centuries’ worth of trash and treasure. The river is no longer the centre of London’s trade and transportation, but the objects excavated from the Thames foreshore provide a fascinating glimpse of the city’s past. Claire Madge talks about some of the relics rescued from the Thames, and her work to bring them to light while volunteering at the Museum of London Docklands.
On the night of New Year’s Eve 1940, a London fireman sat down to write a letter to his wife. George Britchford had just come through one of the worst nights of the London Blitz, when devastating fires had ravaged the city and destroyed an area larger than the Great Fire of 1666. His letter, recently added to the Museum of London collection, is a fascinating glimpse into the darkest days of the Second World War and one Londoner’s experience of it.
18 November 2016 is the 100th anniversary of the end of the Battle of the Somme- one of the bloodiest battles in human history, and one that has come to define our mental image of the First World War. Almost a million men were killed or wounded at the Somme, and one of them was the first employee of the London Museum, Maurice Edgar Read.
In September, we launched our new Great Fire of London website, in partnership with the London Metropolitan Archives, the Monument and the Guildhall Art Gallery. Visitors can experience the gripping story of the fire through an interactive children’s game, a Minecraft experience, and the Explore section of the website, which uses historic maps and objects to tell the story of the fire.
A graveyard, uncovered in London during the 1970s, offered both a huge opportunity and a terrific challenge for archaeologists, who had to excavate over two hundred bodies before the bulldozers rolled in. Lucy Creighton investigates what stories these bones have to tell, nearly 1000 years on.
This autumn, the Museum of London presents the Night Museum: three spectacular free evening festivals, with live music, exclusive talks and weird experiences around the themes of Loss, Darkness, and Endings. We’ve selected 10 objects that give a sneak preview of what awaits within the Night Museum.
In 1976, two museums were brought together to create the Museum of London: the London Museum and the City’s Guildhall Museum. This merged not just two museums’ collections but many years of files and records. This complex archive still has some fresh surprises left to discover. Let’s hear from John Clark, retired Senior Curator of the medieval collections.
The 350th anniversary of the Great Fire of London gave us the opportunity to display a relic of 1666 and unravel a bibliographical puzzle. Museum of London Librarian Sally Brooks reveals the detective work behind one very battered book.