Documentation of artefacts in the Volta regional museum in Ho

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Museums are non-profit making. permanent institutions, in the service of society and its development, and open to the public, which acquires, conserves, researches, communicates and exhibits, for the purpose of study, education and employment, material evidence of man and his environment. Museums provide a significant range of social and cultural benefits to the communities where they are located. Museums serve as a cultural focus and centre of expertise, providing opportunities for community involvement through volunteers, groups and project works. Museums enhance the quality of peoples’ lives and play a, key role in developing a sense of identity for the area in which they are located. Economically, museums have important roles to play: Creation of jobs and increased levels of employment is one economic benefit that can be derived from museums. Museums serve as tourist attractions to visitors apart from contributing to the development of cultural infrastructure for an area alongside other facilities such as libraries, theatres, cinemas and concert halls that provide powerful Support for attracting investment 1mm companies, businesses and government organizations. The Volta Regional Museum provides such benefits to communities in and outside the Region. Thus, it has made very significant contributions to the development of culture. Yet, its cultural objects have not been adequately documented to exhibit its tidiest potential. The objectives of this study therefore are to identify and describe the artefacts in the Volta Regional Museum, to examine the artefacts and record their origin and social significance, and finally write an illustrated report on it. Descriptive and Historical research methods were used to describe, record, analyze and interpret conditions of artefacts that exist in the Volta Regional Museum. Observation and interview techniques were employed to gather data. Relevant literature on the topic was also reviewed. The study, revealed that there was virtually no written, photograph, film video, computer and website documentation on artefacts in the Volta Regional Museum. The only written inventory had a number of artefacts wrongly described. This came as a result of lack of professional staff such as artists, anthropologists, archaeologists and historians to work in the museum. Some recommendations were made to avert such problems in the future. Museum administrators should involve royals: historians, archaeologists etc. in the discharge of their duties until the museum employ a set of qualified staff. Further, other stakeholders, apart horn the museum staff, should be called upon to support the museum in diverse ways such as donating films, projectors, cameras, video cameras, digital camera, computers and cash to upgrade the current status of the Volta Regional Museum. Research staff should be motivated to travel and collect a number of artefacts and information periodically for continuity and growth of the museum. Accounts of the museum should be audited so that stall will proficiently and appropriately use subvention on what it is meant for. Finally, the museum should be considered not as a centre where ‘dead’ or still objects are displayed, but as a dynamic and progressive centre for research, education and social advancement.
A Thesis Submitted to the School of Graduate Studies Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the Degree of Master of Art Education, 2005