The latest installation of the “Kelsey in Focus” program is now available to view at the Kelsey Museum. Curated by Museum Director Nicola (Nic) Terrenato and IPAMAA student Amelia Eichengreen, this display showcases research and artifacts examining the life cycle of Roman soldiers. The installation opened on Tuesday, November 7, coinciding with the observance of Veterans Day on Saturday the 11th.

The new Kelsey in Focus case features a diorama of a Roman-Celtic skirmish, a head and torso of a soldier, a horseman figurine, a naval inscription, and a military diploma from Graeco-Roman Egypt. These objects help illustrate the experience of Roman soldiers, who—after enlisting as volunteers in their 20s—typically served for 16–25 years, their position in the Roman forces dependent on their physical condition, background, and citizenship status. The Kelsey in Focus installation also explores the aftermath of service for individuals who survived their decades-long military career. Honorably discharged and given a diploma and land to cultivate, those veterans lived out the remainder of their days held in high esteem. 

The Kelsey in Focus program was developed in 2018 to display seldom-seen objects in the museum’s collection of more than 100,000 artifacts and to allow curators, staff, and students to share their research with the museum community. Kelsey in Focus cases can be viewed on the first floor of the museum, near the display of ancient glass.