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Disaster Relief Workshop

February 2nd, 2010

Disaster Relief Workshop

Nicole Wittig

MA Student, Program in Maritime Studies

Members of the Conservation & Preservation Department in Joyner Library are organizing a disaster relief workshop.  The workshop details the steps that must be taken when there is water damage to a library’s collection including books, papers, and photographs.  For those of you at home, here are some basic steps to take if your personal collection of books are damaged. 

Step 1:  Lay some bath towels down on the surface where you will dry the books.  Librarians will use blotting paper, but who has that laying around!

Step 2:  Find absorbant materials around your house, the Brawny Man will do just fine!  If the book is only partial wetted then interlace just a few paper towels throughout, but if fully wetted then add more trying not to over stuff the book and damage the spine.  Be careful when pulling apart the pages, they will be more apt to tearing or sticking together when wet. 

Step 3:  Get a household fan and have that positioned to circulate air around the books. 

Step 4:  Monitor the paper towels, when they become damp remove the old and replace with new ones.

These steps should help minimize the growth of mold, warping and staining of your book’s pages.  The book will not be pristine again, but hopefully readable.

General Conservation

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