Wikipedians and GLAM contributors visit State Museum of Braunschweig
Inside the laboratories of Landesmuseum Braunschweig, CC-BY-SA 3.0
Between June 21-23, around 20 Wikipedians and GLAM activists spent a weekend at Braunschweigisches Landesmuseum to learn everything about the great upcoming exhibition Roms vergessener Feldzug. Die Schlacht am Harzhorn (Rome´s forgotten campaign. Battle at the Harzhorn).
The exhibition, opening September 1, is about an extraordinary archaeological discovery: near Kalefeld, ancient military findings enabled scientists to reconstruct a Romano-Germanic battle in 3rd century A.D. Within the scope of a project in support of local cultural cooperations between Wikipedia communities and cultural institutions (GLAM on tour), a programme was set up by Wikipedians, Wikimedia Germany and the museum.
Both sides gained from the project. Local Wikipedians and GLAM activists were invited to visit the exhibition in advance, hear exclusive scientific lectures about the historical context and talk with the curator. The museum provided a guided photo tour through the depots and laboratories of the museum, where objects for the exhibition get restored. During an edit-a-thon, articles about the topic could be started or updated; many have been revised, updated and picturized by now.
Two longtime Wikipedians held a lecture about Wikipedia for the museum staff, prospective Wikipedians from Braunschweig and invited press. The museum´s director underlined that it was most interesting for her and all her colleagues to get to know the people behind Wikipedia. After the lecture, interested guests were invited to make their very first steps in editing Wikipedia, supported by experienced Wikipedia contributors. The most exciting part of the weekend was our field trip to the ancient Roman battlefield. The lead researchers gave the Wikipedia group a vivid insight in the Romano-Germanic combat that had been forgotten for hundreds of years.
Given the fact that this pilot cooperation worked out really well, all participants, the Wikipedians and the museums staff, are enthusiastic about future cooperations. A Wikipedia workshop for the staff and another edit-a-thon during next years exhibition about the centenary of World War I are planned. Learn more about the cooperation in our Blog and on the project page (in German).
A 2014 exhibition on the digital society is currently in the planning phase, and the Wikimedia community is invited to put forward any ideas it might have on the matter. The exhibition is to be installed on a ship that will travel major rivers in Germany and Austria next summer, stopping for a few days each in about 40 cities along the way. For details, see the project page.
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