Welcome to the
South Georgia Museum Collection Online

The South Georgia Whaling Museum was set up in 1991 and initially focussed on whaling and sealing. The name was changed in 1998 to reflect its expansion to encompass all aspects of South Georgia’s rich heritage and natural history. The collection now reflects all aspects of South Georgia including whaling, sealing, discovery and exploration, natural history, philately, science and research.

Our online database has been completely redeveloped, making it easier to find information and it will allow you to search the collections of natural and man-made objects. It is still a work in progress and there may be incomplete records. For example, we are slowly building up a collection of professional images for each of our objects, and some records have no image.

We hope you enjoy exploring our collections.

This catalogue is continuously updated, and we are aiming to increase the number of records available for searching.

We hope you enjoy exploring our collections.

Can We Help You?

Exploring our database might inspire questions about an object or area of the collection. If we can, we will do our best to answer them.

Please contact our Museum team by email if you have any questions.

Can You Help Us?

If you have any information about the objects or items on our database that will help us understand them better, or would like information corrected, we would love to hear from you.


Please contact our Museum team by email to get in touch.

About the database

The database is based on the Museum’s collection management tool, called Axiell Collections, where we record what we know about each object. It was created for the Museum to store information for its own use, and therefore can contain specialised terms, abbreviations and shorthand.

There are two levels of search available: a keyword search, into which you can type anything and find objects based on a general subject matter; or an advanced search to explore the collection in more detail or by a specific material or term.

Additionally clicking on the museum Logo or the “Results” top menu item allows you to scroll though the whole collection at this link: https://ais.axiellcollections.cloud/SGHT 

Using the keyword search

To search across the whole database, just type a term into the main search box and click ‘Search’. This general search is useful if using specific words regardless of where they might be recorded in the database and to get to more detailed information.

For example:

Whale: will bring up all records with whale in any database field.

Guide to search and results categories

Object category
Data for this field is based on collection level descriptions to make a simple search possible. For example: ‘clothing’ or ‘artwork’.

Object types
This field covers all the names of the types of objects in the collection, including many maritime or whaling terms. For example: ‘hat’ or ‘photograph’.

This covers the materials from which an object is made. It includes broader terms such as ‘metal’ or ‘bone’, as well as more specific terms such as ‘copper’.

This covers the techniques employed to make an object, such as ‘carved’, plus terms for media, such as ‘pencil’ or ‘watercolour’.

The Museum has been working on the database for 30 years and we are adding and improving records every year. Work on the catalogue is ongoing and records are not yet complete. If you can’t find what you’re looking for, you would like to suggest improvements or additions to our records, or if you have any other questions about the online catalogue, please contact the museum by email for more information.

Cautionary Notice

Historic terminology for cataloguing objects and belongings are recorded on this database and some of the language may be discriminatory, offensive and upsetting. Images of the whaling era are also included and may cause distress. 

We keep the historic terminology to allow us to see how people in the past perceived the world around them.

Use Of Images

The South Georgia Museum wishes to encourage the dissemination and use of information about our collection that we publish on our website.

Non-commercial use

You are permitted to use images from the Museum website subject to our terms of use.

All images and text in our Collections Online can be used under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 license. You may share and remix these items provided that you do not do so for commercial purposes, that you attribute South Georgia Museum, and that when you distribute these items you do so under the same or a similar license.

Please credit: 
©South Georgia Museum

For additional information and full license text see:
Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0) licence. (Opens link in a new window)

Commercial use

To license images for books, charged-for journals, publications, and other commercial uses, please contact the museum by email for more information.

New photography

If you cannot see an image that you want on the Museum website, you can order new photography from us.

Unless stated otherwise, the copyright for the majority of images on the South Georgia Museum website belongs to the Museum. However, please note that the copyright for certain images is held by third-parties. We aim to ensure we have permission to publish all images on our collections site. If you believe you hold rights to any images, please do not hesitate to contact us.