One of a series of twelve emperor portraits painted by the prolific Flemish Baroque painter Peter Paul Rubens in the early 1600s. The location of only nine of these portraits is currently known. Most are in the Vatican Museum in Rome.
The twelve emperor portraits were painted using oil paints on an oak panel. The likeness of each emperor was probably taken from Roman coins on which they featured, as well as from accounts of the period.
Emperor Otho can be seen in the Library at Normanby Hall. The Hall is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
One of six known plaster copies of the original death mask of Napoleon I. Napoleon died at the age of 51 on 5 May 1821. He died on the island of St Helena in the Atlantic Ocean, where he had been banished by the British Army. His original death mask was created a day or two after he died. Historically, death masks were created as a memento or in order to create a portrait.
Napoleon’s Death Mask can be seen in the East Silk Drawing Room at Normanby Hall. The Hall is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Military badges and signatures collected from convalescing soldiers by Edith A. Spencer, a nurse at Normanby Park Auxiliary Hospital during the First World War.
Normanby Hall opened its doors as an auxiliary hospital on 19th November 1914 with 25 beds. By 1919, the patients had taken over much of the ground floor space with 75 beds. A total of 1,248 men were treated at Normanby Park Auxiliary Hospital. Lady Julia Sheffield was commandant and most of the nurses were volunteers from the local villages.
The Military Badges can be seen in the Normanby At War Gallery at Normanby Hall. The Hall is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Mahogany breakfront bookcase made by Messrs Gillow of Lancaster c.1820. It is decorated with classical motifs illustrating the wisdom found on its shelves, including the owl of the Greek goddess Minerva and the Egyptian sphinx.
Robert Gillow was born in 1704 and served as a joiner’s apprentice before sailing to the West Indies as a ship’s carpenter. In Jamaica he became interested in mahogany and brought samples of the wood back home. This may have been the first mahogany to be imported to England. He founded Gillow of Lancaster in 1730, which sold luxury furniture and furnishings.
The Gillow’s Bookcase can be seen in the Library at Normanby Hall. The Hall is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Scent flask dating to c1825-1830. During the 1910s it was given as a Whist Drive prize by Sir Berkeley Sheffield to William George Wilkinson, a Normanby Estate worker.
William met his wife, Alice Locke, when she worked as a kitchen maid at Normanby Hall. Their daughter recalls helping her mother in the now-demolished extensive servant’s wing, as well as visiting the housekeeper Mrs Harding when she retired to Normanby village.
The Scent Flask can be seen on the Landing at Normanby Hall. The Hall is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
These life-sized Horse and Rider sculptures were created by Harold Gosney in 2011. One is the wooden former, and the other is the sculpture made by beating copper onto the former.
Harold studied and then taught at Grimsby School of Art and is now based in York. His themes are often inspired by Classical and Renaissance Art and the two subjects which dominate his work are the human form and horse.
The Horse and Rider sculptures can be seen in the Stables at Normanby Hall Country Park daily from 1pm to 4pm.
This is a model of the Great Western Railway Pacific class engine, “The Great Bear”. It was built for Sir Berkeley Sheffield in 1910 by James Carson & Co. Ltd. of Cricklewood. Sir Berkeley was a Director of the Great Western Railway. He built a miniature railway track at Normanby to train his sons in the mechanics of railway operation.
After the death of Sir Berkeley in 1946, the locomotives and tracks were sold. In the 1960s, the Scunthorpe Society of Model Engineers brought a miniature railway back to Normanby. In June 2006, a new track was laid close to the site of the original and the Great Bear returned home.
The Great Bear can be seen in the Farming Museum at Normanby Hall Country Park. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Scunthorpe Co-operative Society horse drawn bread van, circa 1930s. This van was one of many to clock up years of service from the early days of Scunthorpe Co-operative Society until their surprisingly late withdrawal in the 1950s.
This van delivered bread and cakes to houses in Scunthorpe and surrounding villages. It also supplied Co-operative branches. By 1924 the Scunthorpe Co-operative Society owned around 40 horse-drawn delivery vans.
The Scunthorpe Co-operative Society Van can be seen at the Normanby Hall Country Park Farming Museum. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Hermaphrodite farm wagon made by the Frankish family of Grasby. This type of wagon, also known as a morphrodute, morphy or morph, was mainly used in the arable farming counties of Eastern England. They would once have been common sights in North Lincolnshire.
Hermaphrodite Wagons were dual purpose vehicles. For ten months of the year it was a two wheeled cart. At harvest time it became a four wheeled wagon with the addition of a fore carriage and two extra wheels. In this form it could hold as great a load of hay or corn as a Lincolnshire Wagon.
The Hermaphrodite Wagon can be seen in the Farming Museum at Normanby Hall Country Park. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
A 1900 horse-drawn steamer bought second hand in 1915. Sir Berkeley Sheffield was concerned about fire, especially after the Sledmere House fire of 1911. The fire engine was operated by the Normanby Park Fire Brigade, made up of estate workers from the village.
The Fire Engine was the main means of fire fighting on the Normanby Estate and in the nearby villages, as the closest Municipal Fire Brigade as stationed in Scunthorpe. Its services were required just once, when a stack fire broke out on a Thealby farm in 1939. Unfortunately it was beaten to the scene by the Scunthorpe Fire Brigade. Afterwards it was decided to withdraw Normanby’s brigade and engine from service.
The Normanby Fire Engine can be seen in the Coach House at Normanby Hall Country Park daily from 1pm to 4pm.
This motorcycle was made by Johnson’s Cycles of Scunthorpe in 1901. The company was founded by George James Bell Johnson in 1890 on Home Street, Scunthorpe. At first Johnsons just sold bicycles and accessories, later expanding into making bicycles and motorcycles.
This is the only Edwardian 107 model Johnson’s Motorcycle known to have survived. It has the oldest J.A.P. engine known to still exist. The motorcycle was found in a cobbler’s shop on High Street, Scunthorpe in 1956. It was restored and rallied for several years afterwards. As it has a surface carburettor is had to be run on watch cleaning solvent or lighter fluid.
The Johnson’s Motorcycle can be seen in the Farming Museum at Normanby Hall Country Park. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
Elswick Hopper gent’s roadster. The Elswick-Hopper Company began as a cycle repair shop in 1880 on Brigg Road in Barton upon Humber. Fred Hopper began to make bicycles in 1890. Within 15 years the company was successfully supplying both the home and export markets.
In 1910 Hopper bought the assets of the bankrupt Newcastle firm of Elswick Cycles. By 1913 the Elswick-Hopper Cycle and Motor Company was employing up to 800 people from Barton and the surrounding villages. The company was one of the top three bicycle manufacturer’s for much of the twentieth century along with Raleigh and Hercules.
The Elswick Hopper Bicycle can be seen in the Farming Museum at Normanby Hall Country Park. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
This Penfold Pillar Box originally stood in Bigby Street, Brigg. Designed by J.W. Penfold it has a distinctive hexagonal shape and acanthus shaped cap on the top.
Pillar boxes arrived in the UK in 1852 and the Penfold Pillar Box is one of the earliest models. Approximately 300 Penfold Pillar Boxes were made but only 150 survive. The green colour of this pillar box means it must pre-date 1874 when red became the standard colour.
The Penfold Pillar Box can be seen in the Farming Museum at Normanby Hall Country Park. The Farming Museum is open daily from 1pm to 5pm throughout the summer season.
A rare find of the back part of a Plesiosaur from a North Lincolnshire ironstone quarry. Unfortunately, the front half had been removed a decade earlier by a giant dragline digger.
During the Jurassic period Plesiosaurs roamed the sea that covered the area that is now North Lincolnshire. Plesiosaurs along with Ichthyosaurs were at the top of the food chain. Specially adapted to life in water, these ‘Sea Dragons’ probably fed on belemnites, ammonites, fish and other animals.
The Plesiosaur can be seen in the Geology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Neolithic Jadeite axe from Wroot in the Isle of Axholme. The Wroot Axe is one of the best examples of its kind in the country.
Jadeite does not occur naturally in Britain. Recent analysis has revealed that he stone was sourced from the North Italian Alps around 4300 BC. The finished axe then made its way to North Lincolnshire around 3900 BC. It was not intended for use and would have been a precious and important ritual object.
The Wroot Axe can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
A rare survival of a Bronze Age log boat made from a single tree trunk. Found on the bed of the old River Ancholme in 1943, for some years before this it had been known as an obstruction in the river. When it was recognised as a log boat is was moved to the museum in Scunthorpe.
Rivers were the motorways of the prehistoric period and log boats the motor cars. The cutting of the new River Ancholme reduced the old river to a ditch. During the Bronze Age however the river would have been a large tidal creek of the River Humber, on which the Appleby Log Boat was navigated.
The Appleby Log Boat can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
The burial of a young Roman lady from Winterton. She was buried in a lead lined stone sarcophagus nearly 2000 years ago near Winterton Villa. The sarcophagus was discovered by workmen widening a road in 1968.
Rather than the usual pottery and building remains, here we have a person who lived in North Lincolnshire during the Roman period. Though we don’t know her name, her face has been reconstructed, bringing us face to face with one of our ancestors. Studying her bones has told us much of her life. Despite being only in her early 20s when she died, she suffered from arthritis.
The Winterton Lady can be seen in the Entrance of North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
The Anglo-Saxon Manton Hanging Bowl was found in a sandpit in 1939. It dates to the sixth or seventh century. Hanging bowls seem to have had a number of different uses. Some may have been used for rituals, such as for baptisms, but others may have been used for washing or for holding drink at feasts.
Although the decoration on hanging bowls is Celtic in nature they are usually found in Anglo-Saxon contexts. The decorative glass mille-fiori used on the Manton Hanging Bowl suggests that it came from the same workshop as the bowl found at Sutton Hoo in the royal ship grave.
The Manton Hanging Bowl can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Gold and garnet pendants with accompanying beads from the seventh century Sheffield’s Hill Anglo-Saxon Cemetery.
The seventh century saw changes in the way that people dressed and were buried. Most seventh century burials contain few grave goods, but a small number were very rich with gold jewellery like that found at Sheffield’s Hill. The gold pendants are decorated with crosses and the changes may have been influenced by Christianity.
The Sheffield’s Hill Pendants can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
The Haxey Hood is an old rural game played by two teams on 6 January. The aim is to deliver the Hood, a leather encased rope, to a public house in either Haxey or Westwoodside. Delivery is by the means of the sway, a kind of rugby scrum of up to 200 people.
The tradition is said to date back to the 1350s when Lady de Mowbray was out riding and her silk hood blew away. It was chased and caught by 13 farm workers. In thanks, Lady Mowbray donated 13 acres of land if the people of Haxey would recreate the chase every year. The Haxey Hood is one of the oldest English traditions still in existence.
The Haxey Hood Costume can be seen in the Local History Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Early Bronze Age beaker discovered in Ulceby in the late nineteenth century. The Beaker was for many years preserved in Ulceby Vicarage. When the vicar moved parish, he took the Beaker with him and its location was lost to archaeology for decades. It was rediscovered when it came up for auction in a London sale room and was purchased by North Lincolnshire Museum.
It was subsequently discovered that the vicar had presented the Beaker to his sweetheart. Though they had gone their separate ways, the lady kept it. Having decided it was finally time to pass it on, she was delighted to hear the Ulceby Beaker was returning home to North Lincolnshire.
The Ulceby Beaker can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Lead Norman baptismal font from the Church of St Mary, Barnetby le Wold. The font was removed from St Mary’s when the church was closed. The Romanesque style leaf decoration dates the font to around 1170.
Norman lead fonts are rare survivals. The Barnetby Font is the only one known from Lincolnshire and one of only twenty known from Britain. Many Norman lead fonts were lost when the Victorians refurbished churches and replaced the fonts.
The Barnetby Font can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Pottery feeding bottle in the shape of a breast or udder, with a hole through the teat to let milk flow into the mouth.
The feeding bottle was found in the grave of an infant at Castledyke Anglo-Saxon Cemetery in Barton upon Humber. Abrasions around the teat tell us the bottle was used; it was not made simply to be placed in the grave. However, we don’t know whether it was used to feed a baby or a lamb. This feeding bottle is unique, no other examples of this shape dating to the Anglo-Saxon period are known.
The Castledyke Feeding Bottle can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
A copper alloy cup decorated with rows of enamelled squares. The Winterton Cup is an example of the Romano-British tradition of producing enamelled vessels, a survival of Celtic tradition into the Roman period and unique within the Roman Empire.
The Winterton Cup is one of a small group of enamelled vessels regarded as soldier’s souvenirs from Hadrian’s Wall. One group of such souvenirs feature inscriptions listing forts along the Wall. The Winterton Cup fits within the second group which show a simplified image of the Wall without any inscriptions.
The Winterton Cup can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
A silver ring made in the Viking homelands and brought to North Lincolnshire by a Viking. The very large size of the Theddlethorpe Ring suggests it was not made to be worn on a finger or thumb. Instead it may be a piece of bullion, perhaps carried on a thong or in a purse.
Though we have historical and place name evidence for Vikings in North Lincolnshire, until the start of metal detecting, no Viking finds had been recorded. Thanks to metal detector finds like the Theddlethorpe Ring, we now know much more about Viking’s in the area.
The Theddlethorpe Ring can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Sixteenth century Port Bailiff’s Wand of Office made of bog oak. It was found in Goxhill Haven around 1930 by Captain William Stamp.
The Wand is marked ‘R.T.’ and a shield. R.T. is assumed to stand for Sir Robert Tyrwhitt of Kettleby, Vice Admiral of England and bailiff of the king’s manor of Barton upon Humber during the reign of Henry VIII. Sir Robert steadfastly clung to his Catholic faith and took part in the Lincolnshire Rising, a short-lived popular rebellion against the policies of Henry VIII.
The Goxhill Wand of Office can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
A copper alloy Roman wine jug handle with details picked out in silver wire inlay. The handle was made in the form of a lion with a salamander lying on its back, resting its head on the lion’s. The quality of the casting suggests the wine jug was made in a continental workshop and imported to Britain. Similar vessels are known from Pompeii and Herculaneum.
The handle was removed from its jug in antiquity. It was found in the vicinity of an early Anglo-Saxon cemetery, where it had probably been included in a grave. Its discovery, along with other Anglo-Saxon finds, helped to identify the previously unknown Anglo-Saxon cemetery.
The Appleby Wine Jug Handle can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
An Arietites ammonite from the Frodingham Ironstone. Ammonites are the extinct relatives of the nautilus, octopus and cuttlefish. The first chamber in an ammonites shell is only 0.5mm across. As it grew it added more chambers and the coils slowly built up.
200 million years ago the area now known as North Lincolnshire was a seabed teeming with life. As creatures and plants died they settled on the seabed and were fossilised. The stone that formed is known as the Frodingham Ironstone. It gave Scunthorpe its iron and steel industry and contains large and varied ammonites. Many of these ammonites are unique or very rare and are known throughout the world.
The Ammonite can be seen in the Geology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
Starfish are extremely rare fossils. Scunthorpe’s Frodingham Ironstone is one of the few rocks in Britain to preserve them. Starfish like this Plumaster were probably common in the seas which once covered North Lincolnshire. Their delicate skeletons are soon destroyed. Fine mud must cover their bodies in a few hours if even the slightest trace is to be preserved.
Many starfish eat bivalves. Their strong muscles can pull the shells apart. Once a tiny gap has been opened, the starfish can force its stomach inside and start digesting its meal.
The Starfish Fossil can be seen in the Geology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.
One of a suite of mosaics from Winterton Roman Villa. The mosaic depicts the goddess Fortuna holding a fruit filled horn of plenty or cornucopia. When found the mosaic had an ancient repair in one corner. The repair was removed when the mosaic was lifted in 1959.
The mosaic was discovered in 1797 when William Fowler of Winterton, an engraver of antiquities, visited the site to investigate the Orpheus Mosaic. A sudden rain shower forced Fowler to take refuge in a ditch with some local school boys. The boys amused themselves throwing clods of mud at each other using their sticks. This action uncovered the edge of the Fortuna Mosaic.
This Winterton Fortuna Mosaic can be seen in the Archaeology Gallery at North Lincolnshire Museum. The Museum is open daily throughout the year.