Among the multitude of preservation problems archivists and special collections curators face in their collections, arguably one of the most challenging is the preservation of historic scrapbooks. Although scrapbooks do not often comprise a large portion of collections in archives or special collections, they are critically important as research tools, and their composition, irreplaceability, and complicated degradation create preservation challenges for even the most seasoned collection manager. These materials have long troubled conservators and archivists, but few have written on the topic due to the array of variability in their format, types of enclosures, and deterioration. Written for an archival audience, this article explores the composition of most scrap-books, outlines the most common methods of deterioration, offers some simple preservation options, and considers the advantages and limitations of conservation treatment and reformatting options for these unique materials.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Library and Information Sciences