10th April 2018
Speaker: Dr Ellen McAdam
Lecture starts at 7pm
Birmingham cautiously considered the need for a civic museum for several decades. The first objects in the collection pre-date even Aston Hall, acquired by the city in 1864. However, urged on by Dawson and supported by Chamberlain and Kendrick, the city took the plunge, and the first phase of the Museum and Art Gallery, cunningly funded by the profits from municipal gas, opened in 1885. From that point onwards the museum service developed one of the three great civic collections of the UK, on a par with those of Glasgow and Liverpool and universally acknowledged as internationally important. I will tell the 150-year story of Birmingham Museums – its brilliant ups and disastrous downs – through its collection, its buildings and its people.
This lecture will take place at the BMI