We are the world’s only museum dedicated to honouring and celebrating the important legacy of Birmingham’s 19th Century steel pen trade, which, at it's height, employed an estimated 8,000 workers, of which 70% were women. The mass production of affordable pens helped improve literacy worldwide and wherever a pen was used it most likely had been manufactured in Birmingham.
With our unique and extensive collection of pens, nibs, machinery and exquisite artefacts we recount the history of one of Birmingham’s most famous industries and narrate the lives of entrepreneurs, manufacturers and workers whose expertise placed Birmingham at the centre of this worldwide trade.
Being an independent museum of charitable status we rely extensively on the regular income from visitors to keep the museum open. However, in view of Government advice in response to the Coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis, it was necessary to temporarily close until further notice and to take the difficult decision to cancel all events until August.
Each year visitors from home and abroad receive a warm welcome to our museum. However, with the loss of this income the Pen Museum now faces an uncertain future and possible closure.
"The Pen Museum in the Jewellery quarter is well worth the visit, easily missed this museum offers interactive items about the long lost art of pens with nibs, the manufacture to its history, the machine to type your name in braille is amazing."
"Interactive displays where you can have a go at using a quill compared to steel nibs. You can also have a practical demonstration on how the nibs were made."
Coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
Unfortunately, we are not insured for business interruption as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Neither do we currently receive funding from the National Lottery or Arts Council England. Despite this, we have to meet bills and other overheads even when we are closed and not earning any income.
Now, therefore, as guardians of the Pen Museum we face our toughest challenge yet and need your help to save a unique glimpse of Birmingham's industrial history so today we are launching an urgent appeal to help us survive this emergency. We know many other causes are also seeking support but if you can help us by donating just £2 you would be instrumental in saving more than just a museum.
For taxpayers we can apply for 25% Gift Aid, at no extra cost to you, which makes this a very efficient way of giving.