Conservation of the Album

Due to its overall poor physical condition, and rapid deterioration of the paper and degradation of the photographs, the album underwent extensive conservation treatment in 2002. This included treatment of the paper i.e. washing and sizing (where possible), removal of a highly acidic support board and replacement with a conservation board of similar weight and colour.

This element of the project is recognised as restoration (non-reversible) rather than conservation, but was considered necessary for the overall long-term preservation of the album. The album was also rebound. Lost or torn boards, where evidence of same existed, were replaced with new card. This gives support to the structure as it was originally intended.

The conservation project also incorporated photographic conservation which included photographing the album in its entirety prior to conservation work; treatment of the photographs so as to remove silvering; and production of 4" x 5" copy negatives of each photograph. As a lining of the wove text paper was removed from the photographs at this time it was deemed prudent, to ensure their protection, to place the photographs in a protective mylar envelope. This insulates the photographs from the alkaline environment of a conservation board.

The assistance of the Heritage Council in providing a grant, under its Museums and Archives Grant Scheme 2002, to assist with the costs of the conservation project is gratefully acknowledged.

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