Friday, October 15, 2010

A Good Photo Album

I’ve decided to conclude photo album week at Preserving a Family Collection on a positive note.  Good photo albums are available.  They’re good for preservation and make attractive presentations of photos, too.

Several years ago, we moved some of my dad’s favorite photos to a new high-quality photo album.  We purchased a photo album with top-loading sheet protectors, photo corners, and horizontal archival storage box from Gaylord, a respected name in archival preservation. 

I brought this album along for Barbara Lemmen, Senior Photograph Conservator at the Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts, to look at during the same session where she looked at our old black-paper and magnetic photo albums.  She thought the top-loading system (where you secure the photos in place using the photo corners and then slide the entire page into the plastic) was appropriate for a case like this, where we had photos of many different and unusual sizes.  When the photos are all the same size, she suggests three-ring binders with pocket pages.

Photo albums have always been marketed as gift items for the holiday season.  While it’s a shame that in the past many albums have not lived up to their preservation claims, the good ones nowadays genuinely are high quality.  Just do your research in advance and purchase the album that works best for the types of photos in your collection.

An Open Invitation:  Please feel free to share in our Comments section about your experiences with preserving your family collections or to ask preservation questions about items in your care.

© 2010 Lee Price

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