‘Aucto Splendore Resurgo’ or ‘I Rise Again with Increased Splendour’ is the regimental motto of The Light Infantry.
Since starting my role as Visitor Experience and Collections Manager back in December I have been getting to grips with what we have in our collections. As well as the extensive Duke of Cornwall’s Light Infantry collection, the museum also holds the national collection of the Light Infantry (1968-2007).
With the formation of the Rifles regiment in 2007, the National Light Infantry collection was in need of a new home, and so it was that in 2010 it became part of our collections at Cornwall’s Regimental Museum. We now preserve and display the objects which tell the stories of the main campaigns the Light Infantry were involved in, ensuring that the history of the Regiment is honoured and remembered.
My work so far has included working through the Light Infantry collection, adding all of the objects – both on display and in our stores – to our database and marking each object with an individual number. The process of marking museum objects differs depending on what the object is made of. For example, for uniforms I’ve had to write museum ‘accession’ numbers (the number we use to individually identify our objects), on a lot of cotton tape, then sew the number in to the garment (like my mum used to do with school uniform!). With around 900 objects, in a number of locations, that’s no easy feat.
A certain amount of detective work is always involved in projects like these. We need to be sure that there are accurate records of the locations of each object in the collection. How things are recorded on our database is critical. For example, I discovered that ‘the Lucknow Brick’ on display in the museum was in fact the same ‘Brick from Lucknow’ that had come to us from The Light Infantry that we didn’t have a location record for!
We’re keen to learn more about the objects in our Light Infantry collection, to hear (and see!) people’s memories of using them, and to learn more from those involved in the campaigns. If you’d like to share your story please get in touch with us at [email protected] or via social media.
Verity Anthony, Visitor Experience and Collections Manager