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Tachwedd 2014

A Window into the Industry Collections

Postiwyd gan Mark Etheridge ar 28 Tachwedd 2014

The 14th October 2014 was the 101st anniversary of the Universal Colliery disaster at Senghenydd. 440 people were killed in this disaster on the 14th October 1913. It is still the worst mining disaster in the U.K. Last year on the centennial of the disaster a Welsh National Memorial to all mine disasters was unveiled on the site of the pit head. The memorial can be seen on the front of this memorial service programme acquired recently.

You can read an article on this disaster on our website. It is also possible to view all the objects from our collections that relate to this disaster on our ‘Images of Industry’ online database. Check it all out here

This interesting autograph book was donated this month. The book contains autographs, inscriptions and drawings connected with the South Wales Miners Federation, and most date to 1926. There are also some inscriptions relating to the Spanish Civil War. The photograph here shows the main inscription on the inside of the front cover.

This month also saw the launch of our First World War online database. It currently contains all objects and documents from the social & cultural history collections. It will soon include all our WW1 related objects from the industry collections as well. The site can be viewed here

To complement the launch of this database, staff from across Amgueddfa Cymru were involved in an ‘Explore Your Archives’ event held at the Oakdale Institute at St. Fagans: National History Museum. This event was an opportunity to show some original documents and photographs to members of the public, and promote the work we do in looking after these important collections.

Mark Etheridge

Curator: Industry & Transport

Follow us on Twitter - @IndustryACNMW

5 Hoff Gynnyrch Cymraeg

Postiwyd gan Sara Maidment ar 27 Tachwedd 2014

Cario Caerdydd

caerdydd bag

Bag gyda phrint llaw chwareus yn dangos rhai o hoff adeiladau’r brifddinas. Mae’r bagiau cotwm trwm, hawdd i’w glanhau yn dod mewn dau faint; bas siopa mawr a bag llai, perffaith i ddal eich cinio. Daw bathodyn am ddim gyda phob bag, i chi ddangos eich cariad at Gaerdydd i bawb.

Rhodd rhamantus

Ewenni lovering

Ysbrydolwyd y fodrwy arian brydferth hon gan fodrwy bwysi o’r 15fed ganrif a ganfuwyd ger Priordy Ewenni. Mewn arysgrif ar yr ochr allanol mae’r geiriau ieme la belle gyda chyfieithiad cudd i’ch cariad y tu mewn – love is beautiful.

Cariad at waith celf?

Gyda’i rhyfeddodau breuddwydiol a’r hiraeth yn yr iaith, mae ‘drama leisiau’ Dan y Wennallt Dylan Thomas wedi tanio dychymyg Syr Peter Blake erioed. Mae’r llyfr cain hwn yn croniclo obsesiwn un o hoelion wyth Celf Bop Prydain mewn gwaith pensil, dyfrlliw a collage.

Casgliad Llwyau Caru Sain Ffagan

Cerfiwyd y casgliad gwych hwn o lwyau caru Cymreig â llaw gan Sion Llewellyn. Mae pob un wedi'i seilio ar lwy garu o gasgliad Sain Ffagan: Amgueddfa Werin Cymru.

Gweu at y gaeaf

Cynhyrchwyd yr edafedd gwlân pur 100% hwn ar beiriannau hanesyddol Amgueddfa Wlân Cymru yn Dre-fach Felindre. Gyda’r gaeaf yn cau amdanon ni, beth am weu ychydig o belenni yn sgarff gynnes, neu arbed arian drwy brynu côn 500g ar gyfer project mwy.

European Science Foundation Exploratory Workshop

Postiwyd gan Chris Cleal ar 26 Tachwedd 2014

Two weeks ago, Botany Curators at Amgueddfa Cymru-National Museum Cardiff welcomed scientists from across Europe, including Romania, Bulgaria, Germany and Spain. The visitors, who are all experts in the study of plant fossils and pollen analysis, spent two days discussing how best to study the changes that have occurred in plant diversity over the last 400 million years. These changes are important as they help scientists understand how vegetation has influenced climate and environmental change in the past.  The meeting included 17 presentations discussing the vegetation from different geological time periods. The visitors also had the opportunity to go behind-the-scenes at National Museum Cardiff to see a selection of rare plant fossils from the David Davies Collection and pollen specimens from the Hyde Collection.  This meeting was fully funded by an exclusive grant from the European Science Foundation. It is intended that the workshop will inspire a series of international collaborative projects that will maintain the Museum’s reputation as a centre of excellence in this field.

We produced a Storify Story based on Tweets made throughout the conference.

Magnificent Molluscs

Postiwyd gan Katie Mortimer-Jones ar 25 Tachwedd 2014

Every Monday curatorial staff from the Department of Natural Sciences at Amgueddfa Cymru - National Museum Wales highlight some of the fantastic mollusc specimens from our collections, on Twitter using the hashtag #MolluscMonday

The Molluscan collections at Amgueddfa Cymru — National Museum Wales number some 180,000 lots from many different collections which have been amalgamated into one systematic sequence.

The most historically important part of the collections is the Melvill-Tomlin collection which came to us in 1955 and contains over 1,000,000 specimens!

Want to find out more? Why not follow us on Twitter @CardiffCurator or @NatHistConserve or follow the hashtag #MolluscMonday to find out about this fascinating group of animals. Lots of people have been joining in so why not join in the fun!

We have compiled a collection of our favourite #MolluscMonday Tweets on Storify. We also do #BotanicMonday, #WormWedneday and #FossilFriday

Storage of entomology collections in museums

Postiwyd gan Christian Baars ar 25 Tachwedd 2014

What is the best way to store insect collections? Recently an enquiry was posted on NHCOLL-L (electronic forum for the care and use of natural history collections) about the use of wood as a material for insect storage cabinets. The question was:

What kind of preservative should be used to treat some new storage cabinets made of eucalyptus wood, that would not harm the insect specimens stored inside them?

The post sparked a discussion about ideal insect storage. Below is a little summary of the factors to consider when planning storage for your entomology collection.

The ideal solution

The ideal solution for insect storage in most situations are metal cabinets, which are robust, relatively cheap, made with a high degree of consistency and can be made air tight (well, almost). This will protect the collection against insect infestations, airborne pollutants and humidity fluctuations (although not temperature fluctuations – cf. Szcepanowska et al. 2013.

Why use wood preservatives?

However, if you do need to use wood for the cabinets, you should consider the following concerns.

Usually, the reasons for treating wood with preservatives are either:

  • to make it more hard-wearing (in the case of wooden floors), or
  • to stop it being attacked by fungi or insects, or
  • to prevent it from greying when exposed to UV light.

Most of these issues are problems mainly in outdoor applications of wood, and there are a number of ways of dealing with these: wood can be varnished to make it protect it from physical impacts, stained to protect it from UV light, and pressure-treated or painted with insecticides and fungicides (ranging from highly toxic substances, such as pentachlorophenol, to less hazardous ones, such as borax).

Assuming the entomology store is dry, has a low relative humidity, clean and there is no problem with insect pests – which should all be the case to safeguard the collection, never mind the storage cabinets – there is really no reason why the cabinets need a finish at all. This applies to all woods – whether in a museum or in a domestic situation, wood used indoors should not require any treatment to protect it from fungal or insect infestations, or greying. Coming back to eucalyptus wood in particular: this has a naturally high content of polyphenols, which makes it naturally resistant to mould growth and insect attack, further negating the need to treat it.

There is one exception: if old cabinets are bought from another institution there is a danger that pest insects may be present already, which could introduce them into the new location. It is advisable therefore to check any old cabinets thoroughly before they are installed – better still, before they are transported to the new location. This then gives time to investigate appropriate treatment options, which are not restricted to chemical means; instead, the units may be frozen, heat-treated or treated in a nitrogen chamber. But that is an entirely different subject which shall be discussed in detail elsewhere.

Organic acid emissions

A further question was the issue of emissions of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Wood naturally emits many different VOCs, including acetic and formic acids, which is a problem in many museum collections (e.g. causing Byne’s disease in Mollusca and egg collections, and enhancing pyrite decay in geological collections). There does not appear to be a problem with VOCs affecting insect specimens themselves, although organic acids frequently lead to pin corrosion in insect collections. Many wood preservatives may exacerbate the problem of VOC emissions from storage cabinets. As we always look for ways of lowering such airborne pollutants in museum stores and galleries there is another reason against the use of wood preservatives in entomology stores – actually, ANY museum stores.

What material to choose for the drawers? Experience has shown that plastic drawers have problems with static electricity charging, which attracts dust. Metal drawers can be heavy and unwieldy. Wooden drawers still appear to be very much the most practical way of storing insects. However, the type of wood used should not emit large amounts of VOCs, and the drawers should have well-fitting lids to keep out pests. If you wanted to use a locally sourced (sustainable and ethical) wood you might have to undertake a little research. Generally, hard woods are better than softwoods (drawers made from softwood can warp with time and often contain large amounts of resin), although many imported tropical woods used in days gone by are now controversial for environmental and social reasons. When researching the potential suitability of different wood types, try tracking down a comparative study of the VOC emissions of different local hardwoods, which would give you an indication of those high emission species to avoid in the construction of drawers.

Further guidance

The UK’s Natural Sciences Collections Association [http://www.natsca.org/] has published some guidance on the construction of insect storage units:

NHCOLL-L is a general purpose electronic forum for those with an interest in the care, management, computerization, conservation and use of natural history collections. Hosted by Yale University, NHCOLL-L is co-sponsored by the Society of the Preservation of Natural History Collections (SPNHC) and the Association for Systematic Collections (ASC, Natural History Collections Alliance).

Disclaimer: The links in this article are purely examples of potential pest management but by no means an endorsement of particular companies or organisations.

Eich cwestiynau, fy atebion

Postiwyd gan Liam Doyle ar 21 Tachwedd 2014

Diolch yn fawr gyfeillion y gwanwyn, oddi wrth Athro’r Ardd a babi bwlb!

Helo gyfeillion gwyrdd!

Ysgol Gynradd St. Paul:

A yw fy enw i a dwi’n 9 oed. Fy ngwaith i drwy’r wythnos nesaf yw i gymryd mesuriadau tywydd i chi. Dwi’n credu bydda i’n mwynhau oherwydd dwi’n hoffi bod yn yr ardd. Athro’r Ardd – Helo A a phawb yn ysgol St. Paul. Mae’n swnio fel eich bod chi’n gwneud gwaith gwych yn cofnodi’r tywydd. Daliwch ati!

Ysgol Gynradd Kilmory:

Methu cofnodi glawiad yn gywir. Iau 22mm Gwener 26mm. Athro’r Ardd – Helo Kilmory, ydych chi angen help yn cofnodi glawiad neu ai’r mesurydd oedd wedi cwympo?

Ysgol St. Brigid:

Mae wedi bod yn ddechrau gwlyb ac oer i’r ymchwiliad bylbiau. Rydyn ni i gyd wedi creu labeli ac mae nhw’n sefyll yn daclus yn eu potiau mewn man diogel yn yr ysgol. Rydyn ni’n edrych ymlaen i weld y canlyniadau. Athro’r Ardd – Da iawn i bawb yn ysgol St Brigid. Gobeithio eich bod chi wedi mwynhau’r plannu a gwneud labeli. Rydw i’n edrych ymlaen at y canlyniadau hefyd!

Ysgol Rhys Prichard:

Gwyntog iawn ar ddydd Iau a glaw trwm dros nos. Clir a ffres ar Noson Tân Gwyllt. Gwyntog iawn ar ddydd Iau 13. Chwythodd coeden drosodd ger yr ysgol. Athro’r Ardd – Da iawn Ysgol Rhys Prichard. Cofnodion tywydd da iawn. Gobeithio bod pawb wedi mwynhau’r tân gwyllt!

Ysgol Gynradd Llanharan:

Yw cofnod glaw dydd Llun yn gofnod o’r holl law dros y penwythnos? Athro’r Ardd – Helo i bawb yn Llanharan. Mae hwn yn gwestiwn da iawn. Ydy yw’r ateb, fel arall fyddai dim cofnod o’r glawiad dros y penwythnos. Rydych chi wedi gwneud hyn ar gyfer canlyniadau’r wythnos diwethaf yn barod, felly da iawn chi!

Ysgol Iau Rougemont:

Dyma ni’n plannu ein bylbiau bach ar y 27ain fel gweddill yr Alban. Cofiwch Athro’r Ardd ein bod ni ar ein gwyliau pan oedd Cymru’n plannu. Gyda’r tân gwyllt a’r tywydd oer, gobeithio eu bod nhw’n glyd ac yn gynnes! Rougemont, blynyddoedd 5 a 6. Athro’r Ardd – Da iawn Rougemont. Gobeithio bod pawb wedi mwynhau’r gwyliau. Bydda i’n siŵr o gofio taw ar y 27ain y gwnaethoch chi ddechrau. Mae eich bylbiau chi’n glyd mewn blanced o bridd, felly dydyn nhw ddim yn poeni am yr oerfel!

Ysgol Gynradd Bickerstaffe CE:

Byddwn ni’n cofnodi gymaint o weithiau â phosib dros yr wythnos. Byddwn ni’n cofnodi mor agos â phosibl at 9.00 a.m.

Bydd glawiad gaiff ei gofnodi ar fore dydd Mawrth yn cyfri dydd Sadwrn, dydd Sul a dydd Llun.

Athro’r Ardd – Helo Bickerstaffe! Peidiwch â phoeni os byddwch chi’n colli rhai diwrnodau, casglwch gymaint â phosibl. Efallai ei bod hi’n syniad cymryd mesuriadau yn y prynhawn er mwyn cael darlun gwell o amodau’r diwrnod. Os yw’r cofnodion yn cael eu cymryd tua’r un amser bob dydd, does dim llawer o wahaniaeth.

Ysgol Gynradd Guardbridge:

Dyma hi’n bwrw tipyn ar ddydd Gwener. Athro’r Ardd – Helo Guardbridge, da iawn am gadw llygad barcud ar y tywydd. Dyma hi’n bwrw’n drwm yng Nghymru ar ddydd Gwener hefyd.

Ysgol Gynradd Sylfaenol Rivington:

Roedd dydd Gwener yn ddiwrnod glawiog iawn! Athro’r Ardd – O diar! Gobeithio bod pawb yn sych ac yn gynnes yn y dosbarth.

Ysgol Gynradd Gatholig Blessed Sacrament:

Mae’n gyffrous iawn bod yn rhan o’r project hwn. Rydyn ni wedi mwynhau clirio’r chwyn er mwyn plannu’r cennin Pedr a’r bylbiau i gyd. Mae’n hwyl cymryd ein tro i gofnodi’r glawiad a’r tymheredd. Athro’r Ardd – Helo i bawb yn ysgol Blessed Sacrament. Mae’n swnio fel bod pawb wedi gweithio’n galed iawn i blannu’r bylbiau i gyd. Gwych!

Ysgol Gynradd Stanford in the Vale:

Dechrau oer iawn i’r diwrnod ar ddydd Mawrth a Mercher!

Glaw mawr ar nos Iau... awyr las bore ’ma! Ac mae’r haul yn tywynnu. Athro’r Ardd – Adroddiadau tywydd gwych. Mae’n braf clywed bod yr haul yn tywynnu yn Swydd Rhydychen!

Ysgol Gynradd St. Paul:

Hia, N sydd yma. Mae hi wir wedi bwrw’r wythnos hon. Athro’r Ardd – Diolch am y wybodaeth am y tywydd! Trueni eich bod chi wedi cael wythnos lawiog, ond o leiaf bydd y planhigion  ddim yn sychedig!

Ysgol Gynradd Glyncollen

Rydyn ni’n mwynhau’n fawr gofalu am ein bylbiau a darllen y mesuriadau glawiad a thymheredd.

Dydyn ni ddim yn siŵr os yw’r thermomedr yn gweithio’n iawn oherwydd mae’r darllediadau wedi bod yn uchel iawn er bod y tywydd yr wythnos hon yn oerach. Dyma ni’n rhoi thermomedr newydd y tu allan ar ddydd Mercher ac mae’r darllediadau i weld yn debycach i’r rhagolygon tywydd. Allwch chi anfon thermomedr newydd os gwelwch yn dda? Diolch yn fawr. Blwyddyn 4 Athro’r Ardd – Haia Glyncollen! Rwy’n falch iawn eich bod chi’n mwynhau’r project. Rydych chi’n iawn, mae’r tymheredd yn edrych yn uchel iawn. Bydda i’n anfon thermomedr newydd cyn gynted â phosibl.

Ysgol Iau Hen Golwyn:

Haia. Rydyn ni ym mlwyddyn 4 yn Ysgol Hen Golwyn. rydyn ni’n mwynhau’r project ac wedi gorffen yr wythnos gyntaf. Rydyn ni’n hoffi eich barf chi. Mi syrthiodd rhai o’r potiau a’r mesurydd glaw, ond mae popeth yn mynd yn iawn nawr. Athro’r Ardd – Helo Blwyddyn 4! Rwy’n falch eich bod chi’n mwynhau’r project. Peidiwch poeni gormod os yw pethau’n cwympo. Mae problemau fel hyn yn rhan o fywyd gwyddonydd.

Ysgol Bro Eirwg:

Dydd Iau - 0.5mm

Rydyn ni wedi mwynhau dysgu a chofnodi yr wythnos hon! Athro’r Ardd – Da iawn pawb!

Ysgol Gynradd Gatholig Blessed Sacrament:

Rydyn ni’n cymryd ein tro i gofnodi’r data tywydd. Mae wedi bod yn wlyb ac yn wyntog iawn weithiau. Ond mae’n cool bod yn wyddonydd, hyd yn oed os ydych chi’n colli ychydig o bêl-droed. H. Athro’r Ardd – Diolch am yr holl ddata tywydd! Rwyt ti’n iawn, mae bod yn wyddonydd yn cool. Gobeithio wnes ti ddim colli gormod o bêl-droed!

Ysgol Gynradd Coppull Parish:

Mae plant blwyddyn 4 wedi cofnodi’r rhain eu hunain. Efallai bod rhai rhifau o chwith. Er enghraifft, rydw i wedi newid rhifau tymheredd a glawiad dydd Iau. Doedd hi ddim yn teimlo fel sero gradd Celsius ar y diwrnod, a dyma’r plant yn ysgrifennu mm yn y blychau tymheredd. Hmmmmm. Roedd mm yn y blwch ar gyfer dydd Mercher hefyd. Marie Codd, Arweinydd Gwyddoniaeth ac Arweinydd Ysgol y Goedwig. Athro’r Ardd – Haia Marie. Mae’n wych bod y plant yn cofnodi’r data eu hunain. Mae’n gynnar yn y project felly rydyn ni’n siŵr o weld camgymeriadau. Rwy’n siŵr y byddwch chi i gyd yn arbenigwyr erbyn diwedd y flwyddyn. Da iawn bawb!

Kids in Museums Takeover Day 2014

Postiwyd gan Grace Todd ar 19 Tachwedd 2014

On November 13th Class Hawk from Trelai Primary joined us for Kids in Museums Takeover day. They tested out some new activities and trails that have been developed for the Artes Mundi exhibition. In the afternoon they worked on developing their own ideas for activities. These were presented to Artes Mundi who will be incorporating some of them into new resources for children. The class came up with some excellent ideas for activities that could be done in any gallery space which we wanted to share, you can see them below.

Thanks and a big hand to Class Hawk and Mr.Cole for all your hard work and excellent fun!


Pick some words that describe the space you are in/the works on display and make a word-cloud from them

Use this to make a rap

Find the names of artists and works and make a word search for them

Describe how the works of art make you feel using pictures

Make masks inspired by the works on display

Have an I Spy game to play in the space where we have to find things on a check list  - these could be parts of a work of art or words like the names of artists

We like activities that helps us move slowly through the space and appreciate the work

The Adventures of Arthur the Arthropleura

Postiwyd gan Annette Townsend ar 11 Tachwedd 2014

In June this year the Natural Sciences Department received a rather special donation from the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew; a life size model of a giant millipede, Arthropleura, that would have lived in the Carboniferous Period, 300 million years ago. Arthropleura is the largest invertebrate (creepy-crawly) ever known to have lived on land, reaching up to 2.6 metres in length, but despite its monstrous proportions it is thought to have been a harmless herbivore.

The model was originally on display in Kew Garden’s Evolution House but when the space was dismantled in preparation for the HLF funded restoration of the Temperate House, it was no longer needed. So it was donated to Amgueddfa Cymru – National Museum Wales, thanks to the generosity of Chris Mills, David Cook and Jonathan Farley at Kew.

The Arthropleura model was in need of some substantial conservation work when it arrived at AC-NMC. It had been on open display for many years in a glass house alongside living plants and was damaged and rusty. The humid display environment had caused the surface paint to flake away and several spiders and snails had taken up residence on the underside of the model!

The first job was to give the model a good wash with hot soapy water and remove the dirt and cobwebs! Then all the flaking paint was scrubbed off, the damaged areas on the legs and head were rebuilt with an epoxy putty and the surface textures recreated. The nuts and bolts of the removable antennae had rusted together, so the metal parts were replaced with new stainless steel threaded rods.

Once the repairs were complete the model was carefully painted with acrylics and then coated in a durable varnish, making it once again suitable for public display.

Some of the Natural Science staff had become rather attached to the impressive 1.5m long millipede model whilst it underwent conservation work in the lab and named it Arthur the Arthropleura! We also decided to have a bit of Halloween fun with Arthur… so he “escaped” and went on the run around the museum galleries! We posted pictures of his adventures on the @CardiffCurator Natural Sciences Twitter account and had a fantastic response from our followers. Arthur the Arthropleura is now a social media star and is a really wonderful addition to our collections!         

O’r diwedd, mae’n hydref!

Postiwyd gan Danielle Cowell ar 10 Tachwedd 2014
Coed ffawydden

Helo gyfeillion gwyrdd!

Gobeithio’ch bo chi gyd wedi mwynhau plannu eich bylbiau.

O’r diwedd, mae’r hydref wedi cyrraedd Caerdydd. Mae wedi oeri ac mae’r dail yn troi gan greu lliwiau oren, melyn a brown hyfryd.

Mae’r hydref yn hwyr yn ein cyrraedd eleni. Roedd mis Hydref yn gynhesach ac yn wlypach nag arfer, felly cadwodd y coed eu dail gwyrdd yn hirach nag arfer.

Roedd tywydd Calan Gaeaf yn arswydus o anarferol! Mewn rhai mannau o’r Deyrnas Unedig, er enghraifft de Lloegr a gogledd Cymru, roedd y tymheredd dros 20°C.

Yng Ngerddi Kew, yng ngorllewin Llundain, roedd yn ddychrynllyd o dwym – 23.6°C! Dyma’r tymheredd uchaf i gael ei gofnodi yn y Deyrnas Unedig ar Galan gaeaf erioed. Gobeithio nad oeddech chi’n rhy boeth yn eich gwisg ffansi!

Dwi’n meddwl fod y tywydd rhyfedd yma’n ddiddorol iawn, ac rwy’n edrych ymlaen at glywed pa bethau anarferol rydych chi wedi’u darganfod yn ystod eich arbrofion bylbiau’r gwanwyn.

Ydy’r hydref wedi’ch cyrraedd chi eto? Ydy’r dail yn newid lliw ac yn cwympo? Beth am dynnu llun hydrefol a’i anfon ata i mewn e-bost? Mae’n bosib y byddaf yn ei ddangos yma ar fy mlog.

Cofiwch y dylech chi fod wedi dechrau cofnodi tymheredd a glaw ar eich siartiau tywydd. Ewch i fy nhudalen cadw cofnodion tywydd ar y wefan i weld nodyn i’ch atgoffa beth i’w wneud.


Athro’r Ardd

Bulbathon 2015

Postiwyd gan Danielle Cowell ar 6 Tachwedd 2014

Athro'r Ardd

Disgyblion yn plannu yn Ysgol Balshaw Lane.

Plannu dan do er mwyn osgoi y glaw.

Ppopeth wedi plannu yn Ysgol Preston Grange.

A planting day of bulbous proportions!

Eleven thousand and three hundred bulbs were planted by school scientists across the UK to kick start the Spring Bulbs for Schools investigation. Seven and a half thousand pupils from one hundred and seventy nine schools got planting to investigate climate change.

Here is a map to show you where the bulbs were planted.

Here are some of the pictures they sent in. Follow their progress and the questions they raise as they record the local weather and flowering through the winter and into the spring.

Professor Plant

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