Monday, March 26, 2012

National Archives Video Offers Peek Inside Preservation Lab

This is pretty interesting stuff!  See how the pros create custom storage boxes.  How could your family history heirlooms benefit from something like this? 

From a March 21, 2012 Press Release:
Washington, DC… The National Archives today is releasing its latest Inside the Vaults video short, Boxing our Treasures, which takes viewers inside the National Archives preservation lab to see how archival treasures are lovingly and carefully housed in custom-made encasements. The three-minute video is part of the ongoing “Inside the Vaults” series and can be viewed on the National Archives YouTube channel:
National Archives senior conservator Gail Harriman explains the importance of such custom-made boxing:  “About 60% of the holdings require some level of preservation.  A great deal of that can be solved by proper housing.”  A custom box, what Harriman calls a “microenvironment,” is a common preservation strategy.
Viewers get special access to the preservation lab at the National Archives where specialists construct custom boxes for items as varied as a Cold War-era pistol and a 1761 Indian treaty.   The boxes can be simple affairs, built to house a book – or extremely complex, holding multiple, related items in multi-chambered constructions.
Background on “Inside the Vaults”
“Inside the Vaults” is part of the ongoing effort by the National Archives to make its collections, stories, and accomplishments more accessible to the public. “Inside the Vaults” gives voice to Archives staff and users, highlights new and exciting finds at the Archives, and reports on complicated and technical subjects in easily understandable presentations.  

Watch the video below:

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