I91EWS FROM THE PRESERVATION OFFICE
I had a dream recently in which the rehabilitated stacks of Library East
had been gutted. The floors had been removed to allow an internal courtyard
with towering palm trees, lush plants and a waterfall. And, the roof had been
replaced with glass, allowing a shower of light to flood down upon the plants
and the remaining books. The design had been hailed as a work of art. "Truly
Floridian," the northern critics said, "Makes coming to the library like going
If this dream were a nightmare, I should have more. The color was lurid, as
were the nymphs diving into the pool. But it was a nightmare, wrought with
concern we all feel as the collections undergo massive shifts and moves.
"What will become of the books, microfilms, maps and magnetic tapes?" Food
for the young insects? In this month's Newsletter, Wendy Scott addresses the
importance of environment in dis-
cussion of the Environmental
Monitoring Task Force of the
Preservation Planning Project. F r
Plants harbor book-damaging in- iO c 01
sects; moisture advances internal cu c T
chemical decay of library materi- L TA
als; and unshielded light attacks '-
the skin of those materials like a \
cancer. Environmental monitor-
ing will gather data to convince li-
brary and University administra-
tors of needed changes. But, the You can correct misshelving.
ability to change environmental Books which are too tall for their shelves
conditions is the responsibility of can be shelved on their spines.
few of us. What can we do to pro-
tect library materials as they're moved about and crunched into ever tighter
shelves? Careful weeding, reformatting and proper shelving make good be-
Shelved on its fore-
edges, the book will
Gravity sag in its case.
Hinges will weaken.
Hinges As the textblock falls
from its case it will be
l; Damaged and text
Placed at risk of loss.
Our libraries are almost the image of an overcrowded French cemetery.
Bodies buried 100 years are dug up, cremated, and-the ashes deposited in a
.mausoleum where the dead commingle, making room for ever more bodies.
Books, like bodies, are de-selected, weeded and withdrawn when they fall
into disuse. One hundred years of solitude for a book, however, is little evi-
dence that it will never more be read. Weeding must be a careful act books
do not rise from ashes with the next coming of a researcher.
Reformatting, as mentioned in earlier articles, is transfiguration and con-
densation new life. Little used materials can be transformed into micro-
forms, magnetic media for optical disks which require less storage space but
more favorable climate.
Proper shelving of materials is an activity in which we can all lend a hand.
Simple rules apply. Patrons and staff should be encouraged to use a step
continued on next page
Hinges will weaken when the book is Shelved on;
shelved on its fore-edges. The hinges firmly in its
begin to fall away from the boards, Hinges will
and the textblock falls out of its case. Some abras
stool for out of reach books. Shelving books in
should trigger shifting since tightly shelved boc
trons try to remove them. Leaning books should
lean will put a warp into the book. Books which]
books too tall for their shelves should be shelve
ities take little time and can be practiced by evei
PRESERVATION PLANNING PROJECT
Preservation Resources Task Force Update-
A Preservation Program requires a wide vari
Task Force is investigating the preservation opp
It will provide the tools to implement the recom
Forces. With that in mind, the committee solici
on resources to support the program, granting a
in preservation, or companies working in areas
such as paper producers, suppliers, and the like
its spine, the book will remain
ion of the spine will occur but is
red. No damage will come to the
Hinges will remain tight
when the book is shelved on
its spine. The textblock will
stay in its case.
to a tightly packed shelf
>ks are often damaged as pa-
d be straightened since the
h reach the shelf above or
d on their spines. These activ-
ryone, not just shelves.
ety of material resources. This
ortunities, rather than needs.
imendations of the other Task
ts your ideas and suggestions
agencies and donors interested
peripheral to preservation
Carol A. Drum