Man sat at a bench

Jonathan Ferguson

Jonathan Ferguson is Curator of Firearms at the Royal Armouries in Leeds.

Having completed a first degree in Archaeology (BA, Exeter 1997-2000), Jonathan began his museum career as a volunteer at Coldharbour Mill Museum in Devon and received his postgraduate diploma in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester in 2002. Before joining the Armouries in 2009, he held posts at Colchester Museum, Imperial War Museum Duxford and the National War Museum of Scotland. His research interests include the use and effect of firearms (both historic and contemporary), their popular perception, mythology, and their depiction in mass media. He is a member of the editorial advisory board for Arms and Armour and British Journal of Military History.

Jonathan curated the 2008 exhibition ‘Call to Arms’ at the National Museum of Scotland and was lead curator on the Royal Armouries’ First World War exhibition ‘Bullets, Blades and Battle Bowlers’ in 2014. He has presented at several conferences, including ‘Firearms and the Common Law Tradition’, co-chaired by Wesleyan University and the Smithsonian Institution (2016). Jonathan has also made various media appearances, including the BBC4 documentary series ‘Sword, Musket & Machine Gun’ (2017) and the History Channel’s ‘Sean Bean’s Waterloo’ (2015).

Recent Publications:

Did you know?

No rust for the wicked

Wrought iron does not rust as quickly as cast iron. At Fort Nelson the ‘Boxted Bombard’ – a large medieval cannon made of wrought iron – is still in good condition despite being left outdoors and unprotected for hundreds of years.

Specialist enquiries

Got Excalibur in the loft or "that arrow" from the Battle of Hastings above the fireplace?

Contact our experts to find out if you've got a historical gem or a car boot sale classic.