Saturday, March 14, 2009

Bead Museum in Financial Difficulties

The ISGB (International Society of Glass Beadmakers) forwarded this to us with regards to the Bead Museum. It would be a shame to see this collection broken up and lost for want of a few dollars.

The Bead Museum was founded in Prescott, Arizona in 1986 and moved to its present location in Glendale, Arizona in 1999. It moved from a 1,400 sq. ft. space to an over 8,000 sq. ft. space and houses a very extensive collection of documented beads from ancient to modern and contemporary periods, a rare and valuable Research Library that includes the archived files of Peter Francis Jr.'s papers and information gathered from many museums around the world, letters and papers of Elizabeth Harris, Lady Gloria Dale, Michael Heide and Albert Summerfield. Many of you will recognize those names as important contributors to bead knowledge in the 1970's '80's and 90's.

The sudden and catastrophic drop in economy, unexpected and unprepared for, has dramatically impacted the Museum's funding for 2009. They now feel the need to search for support wherever it can be found. This support would help it to stay open and bridge over to the time when it can continue all the services it has given during the past 23 years since its founding. They have cut staff and expenses, are closed Mondays and Tuesdays and are operating on 'bare bones'. This is the first time in the organization's history it has needed emergency help.

Since the December 31st '08 unfortunate closing of the Bead Society of Greater Washington's Museum, the Bead Museum in Glendale is the only place that has a comprehensive collection of beads available for study that is open to the public. I have been asked by the Board to put the word out that if anyone feels they can contribute funds towards the stability of The Bead Museum, they would be gratefully accepted.

If you are able to help please email the new Director, Kelly Norton, phone 623-931-2737. Donations can also be sent to:

The Bead Museum
5754 West Glenn Drive
Glendale, AZ 85301

Best Wishes to you all,

Gabrielle Liese for the ISGB

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