Over the past two years, a team of programmers, designers, curators, collection managers and database experts from across Museum Victoria have been working on a new, integrated website for our collections. We are excited to announce that the MV Collections website is now live.
The new site provides a single website to explore our Humanities (including history, technology and Indigenous collections) and Natural Sciences (including zoology, palaeontology and geology) records, with over 1.14 million item and specimen records from our collections, and over 3000 authored articles and species profiles, representing our research.
Museum Victoria Collections website homepage
As well as providing lots of information, there are more than 150,000 images on the site. Over 80,000 were taken by our own MV photographers and staff. We have applied a Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license to these images so that anyone can reuse them, as long as the image is credited back to MV. In addition, 31,000 more images are shown as being in the public domain, which means that there are no known copyright restrictions on their use.
The text is also all available for reuse and there’s a handy ‘Cite this page’ reference for students and teachers.
Use the site on your mobile device
The website has been designed to be used on whatever size screen suits you best. Desktops, laptops, tablets and mobile phones of all sizes will all work.
For programmers and developers, the Our API section makes our data available for use by other institutions on their sites. You’ll already find MV data in DigitalNZ, the National Library of Australia’s Trove and the Atlas of Living Australia.
Also, the website code is available as open source on GitHub in Museum Victoria’s repository for any developers who wish to explore what’s under the hood.
The search function is powerful, and quick, but there are a few hints that are handy to know.
Firstly, you don’t need to enter any search term at all – and if you don’t, you’ll get back every record in the system. That’s over a million results!
Each word you type is searched separately. For example, a search for Melbourne fashion will give all records with Melbourne plus all records with fashion. Records with both words should come up high in the results.
Museum Victoria Collections search with search term of "Melbourne fashion"
If you want to force the system to search on a phrase, use quote marks “” around the phrase. E.g., try “Port Phillip Bay”.
Search on a phrase: “Port Phillip Bay”
If you have already done a search, e.g. for the word tractor, you can add extra terms by typing in the additional word or phrase then click the “plus” button to the right of the search box. Adding an extra term will result in a smaller set of results. For example, the search below will give you results for all tractors in the collection that are associated with Shepparton.
Search which will give results for all tractors in the collection associated with Shepparton
Another way to refine your search results is to use the filters on the left of the screen. You can turn on or off as many filters as you want.
Museum Victoria Collections website search filters
Features coming soon
We’re still working on a few features. Next up to be added is the ability to download images.
In the meantime, we hope you enjoy exploring MV Collections, any time of the day or night.