The Artefacts collection can best be summed up as the ‘social history’ or ‘community history’ collection. It comprises around 300 items, mostly from the period 1850-1980, of which about half are on permanent display in the themed cases within the museum.
Most of the ‘things’ you see in the museum which do not fall into the other collection categories will probably be in artefacts. As such, it is an extremely diverse and exciting array of local material.
In general artefacts covers a number of distinct strands:
- Items associated with the individual, such as clothing and items for personal use and adornment, such as toys, a parasol, jewellery and combs.
- Items associated with local home life, such as household equipment and furniture – cutlery, mugs, pots, tankards, candlesticks, a spinning wheel, etc;
- Work life, such as the tools or products of local trades and occupations, such as a ploughshare, a malting shovel or bakery equipment;
- Community life in terms of services and organisations such as schools, transport, utilities, leisure activities and churches;
- Events and local activities such as women’s suffrage, the National Rifle Association, ‘Charter Day’ for Wimbledon and mementoes of Wimbledon during the two World Wars. The collection contains several commemorative items in silver and ceramic, recording notable dates in Wimbledon’s history, such as the silver trowel used by Alderman Shirl Mussell at the ceremonial laying of the foundation stone of the ‘new’ Town Hall in 1930.