Oakville Museum Collections Management Procedure

Purpose statement

The Town of Oakville Museum is committed to responsible and ethical collections management practices which meet all municipal, provincial and federal legislative requirements.

The mission of the Oakville Museum is to collect, manage, research, preserve and interpret to the public, through exhibitions, publications, education and public programs, a collection of original objects which reflects the history of Oakville with a focus on Town-owned heritage properties. The Museum is dedicated to:

  1. The ongoing development and implementation of professional museum standards;
  2. A quality of service maintained through ongoing training of staff, students and volunteers; and
  3. Community involvement and community/museum interaction representing the cultural diversity of the Oakville community, past and present.

The Town of Oakville Museum’s collections are a tangible representation of the community’s heritage and in order to retain their informational and historical value, they must be properly cared for and documented. The purpose of the collections management procedure is to provide guidelines for the museum collections related activities ensuring that these activities meet high professional standards.


This procedure provides a framework for collections management and should be read in conjunction with the Conservation and Deaccessioning Procedures.

This procedure applies to all Museum staff and volunteers.


Collection Management includes the responsibility to:

  1. Work within the standards established by the Ontario Ministry of Culture;
  2. Ensure that the scope of collection is consistent with the museum's statement of purpose;
  3. Establish priorities for collection development;
  4. Ensure appropriate procedures and documentation for the acquisition, use and deaccessioning of artifacts in the collection;
  5. Ensure appropriate practices and documentation for incoming and outgoing loans of artifacts;
  6. Ensure appropriate practices are followed for the management of collections records;
  7. Demonstrate a commitment to conservation standards in the labelling, care and handling of artifacts; and
  8. Meet municipal, provincial and federal legislative requirements that have an impact on collections management and documentation (e.g. firearms, hazardous materials).


Curator of Collections: a professionally trained employee of the Town of Oakville with expertise in and the responsibility for determining the significance of the artifacts or specimens in the collection.

Collections: archival records, artifacts, specimens and historical structures that have been formally accepted into the stewardship of the Town of Oakville Museum with the strong presumption of perpetual care, management and access for present and future generations.

Artifact: a human-made item often manufactured or created from naturally-occurring materials and made for use in a cultural context.

Deaccessioning: the permanent removal of an artifact or specimen from the collection, following stringent guidelines and detailed procedures


The Curator of Collections is responsible for maintaining collections records.