Numismatics blog post 3 – Emily Graham

If I never see another Prussian pfennig, it’ll be too soon!

On Wednesday 4th March, I returned to Preston. This was the first chance I got to start what will be the bulk of my work at the museum; the conservation and cataloging of German coins.

Emily's desk

My desk

This was my ever so tidy work desk. Complete with the absolutely necessary tea.

This was essentially the work I was doing. I wrote out the information of each coin onto a paper packet. Then, I took the coin from its nasty plastic case that was corroding the metal, and placed it into the nice paper bag that wouldn’t do that.

Russian pfennig

Prussian pfennig

The reason I chose to show you this particular coin wasn’t because it is a particularly impressive coin (because it isn’t) but this coin is all I can think about when I think about my work that day. Why? Because I conserved 82 coins that day. And out of that 82, 46 were virtually identical Prussian pfennigs!!! I did finally manage to conserve all the Prussian pfennigs but I’m still not done with all the coins from Prussia. I’ll admit, I started to feel very anti-Prussia when I was only half-way through writing pretty much exactly the same label almost 50 times!

However, when I’m not going through the Prussian pfennigs, I sometimes came across interesting coins. There was one small silver coin, which the person who’d originally catalogued the coin couldn’t identify. With some detective work, Matt and I successfully found out when it had been made and by whom!

drawer of coins

Drawer of coins

Where the white section of coins start in the middle row, that is the beginning of my German coins. It continues along that row, and through the row to the right, and into another drawer.


The section that is white is the section of coins that I completed conserving on Wednesday. I’ll admit, I’m quite happy with the progress I made. When you’re busy writing the individual labels, it seems like the coins will never end, but it’s good to see what you achieved at the end of the day.

empty coin cases

The pile of empty plastic cases at the end of the day.

And to finish this blog, have another picture of the majestic Harris Museum building just because I can, and there was actually sun shining when I took this picture!

Harris exterior in sunshine

The Harris in the sun