The scrapbooks are in varying needs of conservation, and this year Nylah may be able to complete treatment on only the one scrapbook of the five that has lost its binding. It is also one of two in the greatest disrepair. Her goal is to stabilize the scrapbook so that it can be safely handled and used by researchers. Nylah does not plan to create a new binding for the scrapbook because she believes the brittle pages might be damaged in the rebinding process. Instead, she will encapsulate each page in Mylar and then post bind them together with a hard cover. First, however, she will carefully dry clean each page with a hake brush, humidify and relax any creased pages before drying them under a blotter and weights, and mend any tears she finds with wheat paste and Asian tissue paper.
When Nylah’s treatment is complete, the scrapbook will be ready to be returned to UD’s manuscript and archive collection to be more safely used by researchers. The remaining scrapbooks will be rehoused before they, too, are returned to UD to be available for use by researchers.
A printable PDF version of this story is available here. Previous stories on projects from the Department of Art Conservation are archived and available here.