This week was GREAT! I got started on a project I will be working on for the majority of the rest of the semester. Today Chris introduced me to the program PastPerfect and gave me a quick little tutorial. PastPerfect is the program that the museum uses to keep track of their artifacts, archives and library collections. It also is where information about artifact loans, grants etc are kept.
The project I will now be working on is the Alex’s Candy Shop exhibit. The Rassogianis family came to Greece in the late 19th century and went on to run two successful candy shops in the Chicago area. John Rassogianis invented and patented a Two-in-One Automatic Ice Cream Freezer that was used in the shops. This past year, Pauline Franks, one of John Rassogianis’s relatives, donated 100’s of artifacts from the candy shops. The objects range from the furniture used in the stores, to tiny out-dated kitchen appliances I don’t even recognize. When the museum opens to the public in November, Chris will have set up an exhibit about the Rassogianis family, but first, all the objects need to be researched and catalogued. That will be my job!
When I first start working with an object, I give it an accession number. All the items in the Candy Shop collection start with 2011.7 and then each object is given a number after that, 2011.7.25, for example. That number tells us that this collection was the seventh one given to the museum in 2011 and that this is the 25th object in the collection. Pretty cool, right?! There are SO many items to be catalogued, and right now I’m a little overwhelmed, but excited to do some real museum work.