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Resources for Identifying and Researching Your Artifacts, Objects and Specimens

Helpful resources from the Curators at the Ohio History Connection to identify, research and preserve a variety of Ohio items. Use the tabs at the left to see resources related to specific items.


What are these resources for?

Everyday people contact the Ohio History Connection's Curatorial Team to learn more about items they own. Learning about American Indian points, sherds of pottery, rocks, fossils, wildlife, and unknown objects can be challenging and rewarding. Click on the links on the left to see helpful resources from the Ohio History Connection's Curatorial Team to help you identify and learn more about items you find in your home and on your adventures throughout Ohio.


How can I research your collections?

A helpful way to learn more about your items is to compare them to the Ohio History Connection's collections. You can access our online museum collections catalog at https://museumcollections.ohiohistory.org/collection/museum/search. If you know what your item is, enter the term in the search box and click 'search.' If you're unsure of what you have, enter your best guess in the search box to confirm your guess.

You may also find useful resources in our archival collections. You can search our online archival collections catalog at https://aspace.ohiohistory.org/


Are curators available to assist me?

Within this guide the Ohio History Connection's curators share their favorite resources for identifying and researching artifacts, objects and specimens. Unfortunately, they are not available to examine your item(s) in person or via photos for identification or research purposes.


What if I want to donate my item?

It's people like you who help us to preserve Ohio's history! We collect archaeological artifacts, historical objects and natural history specimens from or related to Ohio. If your item fits this description, contact our Curatorial Team at collections@ohiohistory.org or leave us a voicemail at 614-297-2535. For more information about donating items, see our donations guide.


How can I preserve my items?

Heirlooms are the objects that connect us to our family histories. Visit our Preservation Resources page to see some of our favorite resources for preserving objects and artifacts of different material types.