LAST year the British Museum ran a hugely popular exhibition called ‘A History of the World in 100 Objects’. Not to be outdone – and always quick to spot a good idea – Stranraer Museum now gives you ‘A History of Wigtownshire in 100 Objects’.
The museum has selected one hundred unique local items. The earliest is a fossil graptolite, a strange marine creature which inhabited the region’s prehistoric oceans some 400 million years ago. The most recent is a hand-drawn political cartoon from the 1997 General Election which rather bizarrely features the Spice Girls and Stranraer’s Castle of St John. The remaining 98 items cover some 8,000 years of Wigtownshire’s human history.
Among the objects on display are Stone Age flint tools from Kirkcowan, a mediaeval pilgrim’s badge from Whithorn and a hoard of silver pennies buried near Garlieston during the Wars of Independence. The more curious items include a man-powered plough from Stranraer Reformatory, the patent for a manure spreader made at a local foundry and the propeller of the first plane to land in Wigtownshire. Also on display is the skull of the Shire’s last wild boar.
Each object has a special story to tell. And together these objects help us to understand the history of Wigtownshire.
Visitors are invited to select and vote for the item which best represents the spirit and history of Wigtownshire. The winning object will be announced at the end of the exhibition.
The exhibition opens on 2 July and runs until 8 October. Admission is free.