I think it may have been the wonderful Neil MacGregor, then Director of the British Museum, who first used the idea of a specific number of objects to represent something or somewhere; in his case, he  spoke about the history of the world from two million years ago to the present in one hundred objects.

My friend, the historian and writer, Andrew Simpson, has written about many places, brilliantly using objects or places to introduce particular aspects of history. Having lived in Chorlton-cum-Hardy (actually in he very house where Andrew lives now) I have been particularly interested in his posts about Chorlton.

https://chorltonhistory.blogspot.co.uk/2017/02/a-history-of-chorlton-in-just-20.html

Here is just an example of the objects he has chosen in this series:

  1. A history of Chorlton in just 20 objects number one …… a bridge across the Mersey 1816
  2. A new history of Chorlton in just 20 objects number 2, the electric supply box circa 1920
  3. A new history of Chorlton in just 20 objects no 3 the community newspaper 1984
  4. A new history of Chorlton in just 20 objects no 4, the graph and the housing boom 1901
  5. A new history of Chorlton in 20 objects, number 5, calling the emergency services
  6. A new history of Chorlton in just 20 objects number 6, the Garden Village 1911
  7. A new history of Chorlton in just 20 objects number 7, the king William IV clay pipe
  8. A new history of Chorlton in 20 objects, number 8, an amusement arcade and the future of Beech Road circa 1983

I’m thinking I might do something similar… objects from  my family history, perhaps, objects from around our village of Uphill, objects from my own life… hmmm, the possibilities are endless… yes, I will ponder on this!!

Here is a link to Andrew’s book about the history of Chorlton-cum-Hardy:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/d/Books/Chorlton-cum-Hardy-Community-Transformed-Andrew-Simpson/186077671X/ref=sr_1_13?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1488746289&sr=1-13

Meanwhile, here is a link to the objects Neil MacGregor talked about:

http://www.britishmuseum.org/explore/a_history_of_the_world.aspx

 

 

 

3 thoughts on “In ten objects…

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