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Ask a Curator: Where did your collection come from?

The history of the museum collection is really very interesting. There is a story that in the early 1900s, a long forgotten room was reopened at the Etruria factory, and inside they discovered a collection of thousands of different ceramic trials that Josiah Wedgwood himself had produced in the 18th century. Keen to preserve what they had found, the company decided that the best course forward was to set up their own museum. Employees scoured all over the factory and produced, from long forgotten stores and rooms, other items of historical interest and, from that, the museum was founded.

Over the years, we have added to the collection from many sources but many of our earliest items are simply recorded as ‘being found on works’.