Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Preservation Websites to Check Out

A couple of weeks ago, we shared some great books on preserving family collections.  Today, the focus shifts to free media, namely websites.  There are at least four great websites that offer valuable preservation advice for amateurs seeking to preserve historic items.

Preserve Your Family Treasures
Back in 2005, the Minnesota Historical Society launched the "Minnesota's Greatest Generation" project to celebrate the 60th anniversary of the end of World War II.  There was an exhibition at the Minnesota History Center but, more importantly for our purposes, a "Preserve Your Family's Treasures" website was established.  Here conservators and curators offer solid advice on collecting oral histories and tips for preserving all types of objects.

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Saving Your Treasures
Several years ago, the Gerald R. Ford Conservation Center, the Nebraska State Historical Society, and the Nebraska State Library Commission collaborated on an NET Television program called "Saving Your Treasures."  A side benefit was the development of a website that offers videos from the series as well as pertinent segments from workshops associated with the project.  You can learn a lot here.

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The Library of Congress:  Caring For Your Collections
The Library of Congress has set up a website specifically to help families take care of their family treasures.  The site is smartly designed into three sections, first addressing the challenges of preparing, then guidelines for protecting and displaying, and finally advice on recovering after disasters.  Hopefully, you'll never need the last category (disaster recovery), but it's important to know where to turn for help if you ever need it quickly.  There's good advice here.

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Smithsonian Museum Conservation Institute:  Taking Care
The Museum Conservation Institute at the Smithsonian Institution ventured into the advice field with this helpful preservation website.  Some of the links are fantastic for amateurs;  others are more technical and geared for professionals.  Scroll down the right side to see all the resources they offer, from caring for music boxes to guidelines for integrated pest management.  It's definitely worth checking out.

© 2010 Lee Price

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