Three projects that will change the face of the collections

As the repository of major societal and multidisciplinary collections, the Musée de la civilisation have undertaken three major projects focused on a common goal: To improve the preventive conservation, access and circulation to their collections. 

Launched in 2010, the Archives Project is contributing to improve the preventive conservation and pursue the inventory of the collections at the Musée de l'Amérique francophone.

The Collections Digitization Project to digitize collections was initiated in January 2015 thanks to the Plan culturel numérique du Québec.

Finally, following this implementation of the new management collections database, our team is working on planning the second phase of this project in order to make the collections accessible to the public on its website.

The archives of the Séminaire de Québec are tangible signs of the establishment and spread of the French culture in North America, as well as of Québec City's key role in the relations and exchanges between the Old and the New World.

A significant part of these archives is classified Memory of the World UNESCO. 

Musée de la civilisation, photographer Jessy Bernier - Perspective Photo, 0534_relv_0377

Musée de la civilisation is the privileged custodians of these archives. To ensure their preservation for future generations, these archives are undergoing a preventive conservation process begun in 2013 through the Archives Project.

This huge operation will improve their storage conditions and their traceability leading to their future move to the Centre national de conservation et d'études des collections (CNCEC)

A specialized team

Musée de la civilisation, photographe Jessy Bernier - Perspective Photo, 0534_relv_0163

Flattening, surface cleaning, construction of customized containers, minimal restoration, cataloguing, standardizing data, optimizing reserve storage spaces… these are few of the operations currently being carried out by our personnel in partnership with the Centre de conservation du Québec. 

Impressive numbers

Musée de la civilisation, Chantiers des collections, photographe : Jessy Bernier - Icône,  0534_relv_422
Musée de la civilisation, Chantiers des collections, photographe : Jérémie LeBlond-Fontaine - Icône,  0534_relv_0496

The 2014-2015 year was a time of transition for the collections, particularly due to the redesign of the integrated data management system, and the inventory and preventive conservation work done on the archives. The redesign of the collections management system led to a virtual reorganization of the collections and archival documents sectors. For its part, the Archives Project recorded documents yet to be inventoried.

By the end of this project, which is expected to stretch over a decade, the following documents and objects to be treated:

More than 1 linear km of textual documents including :

  • 197 426 old books
  • 221 317 documents and objects in which we can find :
    • 54 000 photographs
    • 34 000 numismatic items (coins and medals)
    • 32 000 philatelic items (stamps)
    • 14183 paper-based works
    • 4 400 manuscripts
    • 4 000 maps and plans
    • 900 sigillographic items (seals)

Musée de la civilisation, photographe Jessy Bernier - Perspective Photo, 0534_relv_0223 et 0534_relv_0224

These items will be inventoried and their state of conservation improved. The storage conditions of some will be upgraded (change of folder, different box, fewer documents per drawer, etc.) depending on their state of conservation. Some of the maps, plans, photographs, historical archives, manuscripts, old books, and other paper-based works will be digitized.

Musée de la civilisation de Québec's Digitization Project was implanted according to the Plan culturel numérique du Québec (PCNQ), announced by the Ministère de la Culture et des Communications on September 29, 2014. This plan promotes the creation and circulation of top-quality digital content with the primary goal of showcasing Quebec's heritage.

The Collections Digitization Project will enable the Musée to develop a high quality digital cultural content. The digital images produced will favour access to Musée' collections and provide our teams with material for publications, virtual exhibitions, and other forms of diffusion while enhancing the management of the collections. They will also be a significant asset in creating relationships with the public.

The Collections Digitization Project has two components carried out jointly:

  1. The photographing of objects from the collection located at Quebec's centre for the conservation and study of collections, the Centre national de conservation et d'études des collections (CNCEC).
  2. The digitization of archival documents, paper-based works, and old books located at the Musée de l'Amérique Francophone.

plan culture numérique du québec

The Digitization Project falls under the responsibility of the Direction des collections et des relations avec les musées Québécois (collections and relations with Quebec museums directorate).

This other major project consists of standardizing and incorporating the data from all of the collections, until now kept separately, into a single software.

In close collaboration with Musée' technology department, the entire team has been mobilized to implement a more efficient and effective collections management approach that will improve the internal traceability of the collections and enhance the documentation of them.

The complexity of this project requires several steps, the first of which has just been completed internally. Numerous tests are currently underway to validate the data and check the software's performance. The next steps will seek to make the database accessible to the public through our Web site.

Come and visit us!

The collections of Musée de la civilisation carry a rich, complex and dynamic history that nourishes and feeds reflections on our society and Québec's place in the world. 

– Recent Acquisitions –

Discover the most recent acquisitions in Musée de la civilisation's collection. Every year, extraordinary objects, archives and precious books arrive to enrich the national collection.

Find out moreon the most recent acquisitions

– Donate to the Museum –

Perhaps you have collected objects or documents that you would like to donate to Musée de la civilisation?

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