The Society's seal and three photographs

Virtual Museum

On this page, we provide links to some of our acquisitions and items of interest in the collections.

Roman Altar No. 10

Follow this link for A Tale of Roman Altar no. 10. If you would like to know more about it, follow this link for a longer version of the Tale with more details.

Bronze Bread Stamp

Find out more about the Bronze Bread Stamp in the Roman Empire Gallery here. If you would like to know some extra details, follow this link.

Gold Fede Ring Brooch

Follow this link for the background story of the gold Fede Ring Brooch in the Explore Gallery. If you would like to know more about it, follow this link for further details.





Cup-and-ring marked stone

This was found during building operations at Birney Hill, Ponteland, and acquired by the Antiquaries in early 2015. The building company whose workers uncovered the stone, Wardell Armstrong, kindly transported it for us as well. It is currently sitting on the grass near the south door of the GNM. Photo courtesy Aron Mazel.

Hadrian's Wall Pilgrimage Badges

It has always been the tradition for participants in the Hadrian’s Wall Pilgrimages, held by SANT every ten years (except for a few pauses during wartime) to be issued with a special badge. Thanks to the kindness of Jennie Du Cane, the owner of Carrawburgh fort on Hadrian's Wall, SANT now has a complete set of Hadrian's Wall Pilgrimage Badges from 1889 onwards. Jennie has kindly donated the badges that she and her father, Richard, had received over the years for their contributions to the Pilgrimage. Jennie has donated nine badges, which include previously missing years for 1969 and 1979 (pictured).

Nineteenth-century photos

Part of our collection of historic photos was on show at the Side Gallery during 2013. They were remarkable images of people in the streets of Newcastle in the 19th century. They strongly resemble the known work of Edgar G Lee, a respected Tyneside photographer and lantern slide maker, with a professional studio in Newcastle’s Eldon Square. They are now at Woodhorn Museum, until 15 June.

In collaboration with Woodhorn, the Side Gallery and the Mining Institute, the Society is now working on a feasibility study with the ultimate aim of  finding out more about Edgar Lee, pulling together all his work and making it accessible on-line so that the images can be identified and their wider social context be appreciated. So we are looking for volunteers, people who have an interest in the social history of the North-East and/or expertise in photographic history to investigate a small group of the photographs to see how much can be discovered about Edgar Lee and his work. Anyone who is interested in helping out should e-mail Lindsay Allason-Jones.

The Harbottle Slide Collection

Our late Past President Barbara Harbottle bequeathed to us her collection of 3000 slides, mainly views and records of archaeological digs. They are of historic interest, and in some cases may provide the only record of buildings or events. Follow this link for more information and to see some of the images.

Favourite objects

Our Bicentenary exhibition, Tales of Antiquarian Adventure, explored the various facets of the Society’s work over 200 years. The podcasts of Favourite Objects, contributed by a dozen members talking about items in our collection, are now available on our YouTube channel, NewcastleAntiquaries. They include


The Bayeux Tapestry


In early July 2013, the builders in the Black Gate discovered a section of the 1851 full-size copy of the Bayeux Tapestry, commissioned by John Collingwood-Bruce, behind bookshelves at the Black Gate. After being on display during an open weekend in August, it has bee reunited with the rest of the copy at the Discovery Museum. Read more...

Nineteenth-century Medical Instruments

Another result of the 200 Years exhibition was that Reginald Hall, who before his retirement was a Consultant Urologist in Newcastle, presented us with some urinary catheters to add to our collection at the Discovery Museum where we have a number of medical instruments on loan to Tyne-Wear Museums. Follow this link for more details.

Seventeenth-Century Silver Pendant

Found in Whittingham Parish, Northumberland. It is the second to be found in the same field, though the first was not acquired. It is still sealed, but it is certain that there is something inside. Follow this link to see an image of it.

Seventeenth-century deed

This is a deed dated 1674, dealing with the sale of two adjacent properties on the Quayside. It is beautifully framed and in very good condition. It was given to us by the local history society in Deal in Kent, who held it but had no need for it. The property is described very carefully, and includes a comprehensive list of outbuildings, which makes it very useful for anyone researching the history of the Quayside. Follow this link to see an image of it.

The 'President's Chair'

This was in the Black Gate, but is now in the Great North Museum. It is said to be made of oak from the chapel of the Knights Templar in Widdrington, Northumberland, and from Old House on the Quayside. Follow this link for an image and further notes. It is apparently very uncomfortable to sit on!

The Society's Seal

The Society's striking engraved seal dates from our earliest days, and was was presented to the Society by our first President, Sir John Edward Swinburne, Bart. It shows the figure of a female, seated on the fragment of an Ionic Column, opposite to an altar found near Newcastle, and below SCRIPTA MANENT: 'the written word remains'.

Roman and medieval coins

We recently acquired two coins for our collection; one Roman and another medieval. You can follow this link to see the images, and this one to find out more about the medieval 'Prince Henry' coin, minted in Carlisle in the 12th century when Northumberland was under Scots rule. It is now on show in the Great North Museum. If you would like any further information about them, please contact our Keeper of Coins, Rob Collins.


In the future, don’t forget your past