The Essex Fire Museum in Grays has a great collection of historic fire engines, firefighting equipment, uniforms and photographs that tell the story of how firefighting has changed over the years. Today’s blog is a guest blog by Snapping the Stiletto volunteer Becky Wash who signed up to help the museum investigate their collection to look for stories of women in the service over the last 100 years.
Volunteering at the Essex Fire Museum
Although I work full-time, I saw that the Essex Fire Museum was offering one day volunteer opportunities so I signed up to take part.
We started the morning with a discussion about the history of the fire service and the role women played. I asked questions and listened to interesting stories retold by Fire Museum volunteers, which we noted as potential stories we could use for the project.
I got to look within the museum’s displays to find objects and create a list of items that may be suitable for display in the exhibition. We also took photographs of suitable artefacts.
Then I searched through the handwritten accessions registers, searching for more suitable artefacts that could help tell the story of women in the Essex Fire Service, and created a list.
We then visited the museum store and I got to see first-hand, how the objects were stored, and we were able to handle some of them.
We decided that we would like to scan some of the paper documents and photographs and I hope to return to assist with this in the near future.