Re: Accession # vs. Catalog #

Wendi Murray

Hi Mike,
This can get complicated, as different museums employ different numbering systems as appropriate for their particular collections (or the same museum changes its numbering system over time). I think Becca answered it very succinctly – we also use this trinomial system at the SHSND, although it has changed over time (the first number has gone from simple sequential numbering to 2-digit years to 4-digit years). In any case, the catalog number should be an extension of the accession number. I would recommend Museum Registration Methods put out by the AAM Press for more detail on numbering systems, collections management, etc.