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Re: Personal Book Question

Poster: "Stephanie M. Thorson" <smt2@st-andrews.ac.uk>

On Mon, 9 Feb 1998, Julien de Montfort wrote:

> I'll go on record as a half-point to either side.  If a book is old,
> rare, well night-irreplacable or very fragile, then I treat it with
> the utmost care (one I keep in a plastic bag because it is nearing
> disintegration...).

<sounds of former archivist choking on her morning coffee>

<conservatorial rant/>

Julien, take that poor book out of that plastic bag RIGHT NOW!  The odds
are very good that the plastic bag is not chemically inert, and will be
giving off gases that will further damage the paper and binding.  Plastic
will also retain moisture and that can accelerate damage caused by acidic
papers as well as increase the likelihood of mould blooms and other
nasties.  If you must keep an old and fragile book bundled up in
something, a wrapping (or more carefully constructed case) of unbleached
and undyed cotton will be far less damaging than a plastic bag.  If you
decide to sew a case, please refrain from using metal or plastic
fastenings.  Ideally you'd be able to put your fragile volume in a
Hollinger box (acid-free archival storage unit made by the Hollinger
corporation) but those can be harder to come by outside of professional
archival settings.

<conservatorial rant\> 

mopping up the spluttered coffee
Stephanie M. Thorson			|  SCA: Lady Alianora Munro
Dept. of Scottish History		|  Clan White Wing
University of St Andrews		|  Tarkhan, Khanate Red Lion

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