Monday, March 22, 2010

And now, time for something completely different...

Been working on preservation of some very old newspapers recently. You see, we were awarded a preservation grant not to long ago from the OKLAHOMA HISTORICAL RECORDS ADVISORY BOARD called “Threats to Your Collection” Grant Opportunity for Organizations. It's a pretty good way to get an archives started and to preserve items that have been donated over the years.

These newspapers are the college newspapers. They range from 1930's to the present day, with a few gaps in between. The paper is your typical newspaper type paper, very acidic and easily tears when slightly handled. Hence the filmoplast P by Neschen. Great stuff! It's a paper tape that mends those pesky rips and tears. It is non-acidic and will probably last longer than the paper it is mending. You can order it and other supplies from any archival or library supplier, e.g. Demco, Gaylord and BroDart to name a few.

Some of these newspapers are in pretty rough shape. We, the student assistants and I, sprayed them with BookKeeper, a deacidifying spray. That stuff is fantastic! It won't take the yellowing of the pages away, but it will slow the disintegration process of the newspapers. It took 10 bottles of bookkeeper to deacidify the newspapers we have. Always remember, an archive is always growing from donations. After we deacidified our newspapers, we received 3 more bound copies of newspapers from the 1930's. We will need to order 5 more refill bottles of BookKeeper to finish these new additions.

After spraying, the mending began in earnest. It took 2 boxes of filmoplast to mend them. These newspapers will be packed in archival boxes to be shipped (basically a road trip) to OK Historical Society in OKC to be microfilmed.

It's not an in-depth report, but you get the idea. If you ever want to know more, drop me a line and I will give you the scoop. Until next time...

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