17 Oct 2018

New hope for glass plate negatives

Look at what you've achieved so far! We've raised over 50% of our target for our 2018 Archive Appeal - here's the progress so far.

In July 2018 we launched an Archive Appeal to raise much needed funds for the rehousing and preservation of over 5000 glass plate negatives in our collections. The glass plates record excavations at the sites of Abydos, Armant, and Sawama and are in desperate need of archival storage.


The Appeal has been going very well, largely due to the efforts of several Society volunteers who offered their skills and advice to the project, and of course thanks to all of you, our supporters and members, who have contributed!

From images to video

A video, made by EES volunteer David Vacas-Madrid, captures the essence of the glass-plates in a way that images on them may have been viewed in lectures decades ago. It reiterates the historical significance of the images and the importance of protecting them for future generations. The use of a parallax effect (or as we call it ‘magic’) gives some indication of what the next generation will be doing with these images and how they can be used to engage audiences online. The full collection of Armant negatives are available to browse on our Flickr feed here

In the press


An article that has only just appeared in Ancient Egypt Magazine (Vol. 19, No. 2, Issue 110) by Carl Graves and Stephanie Boonstra discusses images from the Armant glass plate negatives and the light that they shed on the little-known site and its monuments – many of which are no longer visible on the surface. It is clear that further work by IFAO in this region will bring even more to light, including the history of the EES work there from  1926-37. A second article, this time focusing on the Abydos collection, is expected to appear in the Nov-Dec issue and will include information about how glass plates were produced in the field during these early years of the Society's work in Egypt. 



The Temple of Armant prior to its destruction in 1861-63. Later work by the Society uncovered the buried remains of the temple which are now the subject of further investigations. 

Temporary exhibition – and you’re invited!

A small temporary exhibition of images from the collections will be on display from Monday 26th November to Friday 30th November 2018 at the Society's London office. It will be open during library opening hours and visitors are free to look around. A special late opening is scheduled for Wednesday 28th November 2018 when a brief presentation will be given by Carl Graves and Stephanie Boonstra at 18:00 about the collections and the Appeal itself. Do come along to see the images and talk with staff about the display. Further details will be available on our events page here.

We’d like to thank all of you for your generous contributions toward the Appeal over the last few months. Your passion and commitment to the work means that rehousing them in spring is a real possibility. These collections would not be preserved without you!

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