This book recovers the significant contribution made by women to museums, not just in obvious roles such as workers, but also as donors, visitors, volunteers and patrons. It suggests that women persistently acted to domesticate the museum, by importing domestic objects and domestic regimes of value, as well as by making museums more welcoming to children, and even by stressing the importance of housekeeping at the museum. At the same time, women sought 'masculine' careers in science and curatorship, but found such aspirations hard to achieve; their contribution tended to be kept within clear, feminised areas.
The book will be of interest to those working on gender, culture, or museums in the period. It sheds new light on women's material culture and material strategies, education and professional careers, and leisure practices. It will form an important historical context for those working in contemporary museum studies.