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Discovering Lost Sounds

Do you know what a guillotine sounds like? How about a Tiegel semi-automatic stop-cylinder printing press?

These are some of the sounds from past generations that have been lost (sometimes for the better). But the Museum of Work in Norrköping, Sweden, is preserving those sounds.

Here & Now’s Robin Young listens to some of these lost sounds with Torsten Nilsson, curator of the Museum of Work.

Guest

  • Torsten Nilsson, curator of the Museum of Work in Norrköping, Sweden.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

The sound of a guillotine used for executions, like this one on display at a museum in Rudesheim, Germany, is one of the many "lost sounds" being preserved by Torsten Nilsson. His "preserved" sounds can be heard at the Museum of Work in Norrköping, Sweden. (FarinelliMoi/Flickr)
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The sound of a guillotine used for executions, like this one on display at a museum in Rudesheim, Germany, is one of the many "lost sounds" being preserved by Torsten Nilsson. His "preserved" sounds can be heard at the Museum of Work in Norrköping, Sweden. (FarinelliMoi/Flickr)
If it's been a long time since you've seen a Polaroid, you can remind yourself what they sounded like in Nilsson's exhibit. (Torsten Nilsson/Museum of Work)
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If it's been a long time since you've seen a Polaroid, you can remind yourself what they sounded like in Nilsson's exhibit. (Torsten Nilsson/Museum of Work)
The sound of an old Macintosh computer is part of the "lost sounds" exhibit. (Torsten Nilsson/Museum of Work)
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The sound of an old Macintosh computer is part of the "lost sounds" exhibit. (Torsten Nilsson/Museum of Work)