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Wikipedia in the museum

Discover Hamburg‘s architectural history and “Taktgeber Hafen” by QR code on Wikipedia

Since autumn 2012, information panels with QR codes have been in place in the Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte, enabling visitors to explore exhibits. All smartphone users can link up with Wikipedia using the code system QRpedia and obtain digital information about Hamburg’s history. Articles on the individual exhibits which were integrated into the facades and rooms of the museum and on exhibits in the recently opened exhibition “Taktgeber Hafen – Hamburg’s Urban Development in the 20th Century” can be accessed.

From its inception, the Museum of Hamburg History, designed by Fritz Schumacher and built from 1914-1922, was not meant to be a “standard” museum which just presents exhibits. Schumacher and the museum’s director Otto Lauffer arranged for the installation of special fragments of the old Hamburg no longer present in the cityscape today in the new building. To ensure that these integrated elements can be understood better, the Wikipedia authors wrote a range of articles, translated them into several languages, created photos in the exhibition and incorporated picture material from the collection in Wikipedia as part of GLAM Cooperation with Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte. Photos, graphic presentations and information on the original buildings can now be accessed on Wikipedia for these architectural elements. In addition, digital maps present the former location of buildings like the Old Town Hall (Altes Rathaus), Bauhof or houses on Deichstraße. In the permanent exhibition “Taktgeber Hafen”, selected objects were also fitted with codes which provide access to additional information on Wikipedia.
Foreign-language visitors can derive special benefit from the background information provided in the free online encyclopaedia: when the code is scanned, the device presents the respective Wikipedia article in the language set by the user.

For more information, please visit the Project Website at Wikipedia.

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Window framing in the Museum of Hamburg History
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Exterior view of the New Wall Frame 10. Clearly visible: the stone garland and the portal (bottom right). Photo: Georg Koppmann, 1884
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QR-Codes in the exhibition at the Museum of Hamburg History
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QR-Code to the project page Wikipedia: Museum of Hamburg History /QRpedia

GLAM Cooperation

A GLAM cooperation betweenMuseum für Hamburgische Geschichte and the Wiki Community, i.e. active authors on Wikipedia, Wikimedia Commons and other Wikimedia projects, has been in operation since 2011.

GLAM stands for “Galleries, Libraries, Archives and Museums” and refers to cooperation projects between cultural institutions and the Wikimedia Community. The cooperation between Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte and the Wiki Community is Germany’s first GLAM cooperation. The aim is to make the museum‘s exhibition and collection objects accessible digitally in both text and picture form in Wikipedia and Wikimedia Commons. Participation of the German and international Wiki Community is a central objective of the project. Events and sub-projects are being organised to provide interested members of the community with the opportunity to participate actively.

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Kissed Alive

Pictures from the exhibition “Kissed Alive” and the Collection Villa Rücker on Wikimedia Commons

From April to December 2010, Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte presented the big public restoration show “Kissed Alive- The Rediscovery of a Hanseatic Country Residence (1830-1909)”. The interior of a classicist mansion from Hamburg-Hamm from the period around 1830 was exhibited on an area of several hundred square metres. The project which extended for several months gave visitors extensive insight behind the scenes of the museum world and into the different areas of work of conservators. Alongside the importance of the interior decorations to art and culture history, the history of Hamburg and its district of Hamm during the 19th century were also presented. That included the lifestyles and biographies of the people associated with the residence and an account of the museum‘s conservation efforts to preserve its valuable historical holdings.

More than 300 picture files from the exhibition, including the interior of the mansion, historical photos, graphic works and photos of the conservation activities are accessible on Wikimedia Commons and available for use under a Creative Commons License.

‘Kissed Alive’ on Wikimedia

Pictures of the project on Wikimedia Commons

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Students of HAW Hildesheim, Department of Conservation and Restoration, roll out a large fragment of wallpaper from the music room of Landhaus Rücker.
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View into the workshop of the wood restoration of the exhibition "wachgeküsst". Photo: Britta Willig
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A large glass table with luminaires installed underneath makes it possible to detect defects in transmitted light.
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Stefanie Gatzke (Hamburger Praxisjahr Restaurierung; restoration team "wachgeküsst") checks the removal of a cover with solvents at the technoscope.

A digital door to hidden treasures

A selection of unknown collections on Wikimedia Commons

Museums are stores of knowledge. For more than 100 years, the most diverse objects and information about the history of Hamburg have been assembled, researched and preserved in the Museum für Hamburgische Geschichte. The museum archive and library store reports, essays and scientific articles, while the museum’s vaults accommodate some 500,000 collection items as a treasure house of our historical heritage.

Access to this store of knowledge tended to be confined to researchers in the past, while museum visitors could only gain insight into the museum holdings through exhibitions and the museum’s publications. Since 2008, the collection items are being recorded digitally, and some 140,000 have already been analysed and digitalised.

A small selection of the museum’s often entirely unknown and nonetheless outstanding collections is now accessible on Wikimedia Commons. They include items from the collection fields: Medicine and Pharmacy, Death Masks, Measures and Weights, Toys, Stamps and the Lovelock Collection acquired by the museum in 2012.

‘Digital Door to Hidden Treasures’ on Wikipedia

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Nozzle jug of a pharmacy without inscription On the back and the underside small paper labels from "APOTHEKE von H. WICKE / HAMBURG / Gr. Neumarkt No. 37".
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Pharmacy jug "Syr: Rhoead" Syrupus Rhoeados = corn poppy syrup; dried poppy seed blossoms (Papaver rhoeas) are extracted with water and, after adding sugar, processed into an intensively red coloured syrup. Used as a colour component.
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Albarello "Extr:. Laur:Cer." Probably with content. Extract
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Musk box "Musk / pr. 0,2=4 f / hand-picked."