A Month in the Museum Library

I have a confession to make. When my lecturer suggested that I complete my four-week placement at the National Museums Scotland libraries, I reacted with some surprise. Despite making many childhood visits to the museum on Chambers Street, I was unaware that there was a library. However, after spending a month-long placement there, I discovered that there most definitely is a museum library and it is fascinating.

Research Library at the National Museums Scotland
Research Library at the National Museum of Scotland.

Not only does the library have information on almost anything you can think of (go to the online catalogue for more details), the staff are friendly and willing to help with any enquiry. While I was there, I even saw them spend weeks searching through the archives and special collections to help with some requests!

Some of the farming books I was working on
Some of the farming books I was working on during the internship.

The library staff were very helpful and provided me with some excellent opportunities to improve my skills and learn more about librarianship. Some of the duties during my placement included checking catalogue entries, reclassifying books on farming to the Dewey Decimal System and creating listing of underwear adverts held in the special collections as part of the Jenner’s archive.

National War Museum Library
National War Museum Library.

During my placement I was able to work with the special collection at the National War Museum at Edinburgh Castle. I really enjoyed seeing all the beautiful old books and finding out more about the library’s unique collection.

Section of Funeral Procession of Arthur Duck of Wellington, held at NMWS Library
Section of Funeral Procession of Arthur Duke of Wellington, held at National War Museum Library.

I thoroughly enjoyed my time with the library and learned a lot to help with my future career. Everyone was very welcoming and happy to help me. The library is well worth a visit when it reopens in 2016. For further information about the library go to the library webpage or email library@nms.ac.uk

Section of Funeral Procession of Arthur Duck of Wellington, held at NMWS Library
Section of Funeral Procession of Arthur Duke of Wellington, held at National War Museum Library.

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