Museums Collections Management Facility Project Underway

LEONARDTOWN, Md. (March 07, 2010)—Friends gathered on a cold sunny day on Feb. 21 to mark the beginning of a Collections Management Facility being built for the St. Mary's County Museum Division on the grounds of the St. Clement's Island Museum in Colton's Point.

The Friends of the Museums have dedicated much of their recent fundraising towards this facility; the project received $150,000 from the county government budget in FY2009, and the Friends have agreed to cover the remaining project costs. Community members are especially encouraged to join the Friends of the Museums and to support the fundraising events.

It will be built on property owned by county government behind the workshop at the St. Clement's Island Museum. The 2500 square foot building will feature humidity and temperature controlled environment. It will house shelving, storage units, a conservation work area and a staff work station.

"We received a wonderful response to our fundraising efforts to build this facility, and we are looking forward to working with the county and our builder, CMI General Contractors, Inc., to construct a building worthy of the Museum Division's marvelous collections," said Sheila Gibbons Hiebert, Friends of the St. Clement's Island and Piney Point Museums President.

"This facility will help preserve the county's heritage," explained Shirley Leyland, President of the Museum Division Board of Trustees. "We have over 5000 artifacts that need to be properly catalogued and stored to the standards of the American Association of Museums for future generations. We are excited about this new permanent home finally beginning."

Some of the current artifacts include weathered decoys, colonial pottery and significant items of local maritime history. The new building will allow for the expansion of the collection when new acquisition opportunities present themselves.

Source: St. Mary's County Government

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