ALF2 Construction Update – May 17

The first shipment of shelving arrived this morning (May 17, 2010) which means that the facility is, more or less, complete.  There were a few construction crew doing what appeared to be some final touch-up items and working on the fire doors that separate the two sections of the ALF.  This set of photos should give some idea of the size of the facility.

Craig Lab – Quarterly Report (January – March 2010)

E. Lingle Craig Preservation Lab

Quarterly Report

January – March 2010

During the first quarter of 2010, the Craig Preservation Lab processed 3,929 items.  Various types of enclosures were, as usual, the bulk of our treatment with 2,921 items receiving an enclosure.  Of these 1,341 were made using the Kasemake and most the remainder were done by the staff in the General Conservation section of the Lab.  During this same period, Bindery Prep completed treatment on 2,528 items of which 1,655 were serials.

Special projects and activities for the period included:

Doug Sanders was contacted by the office of the President and asked to coordinate the design of a series of albums and housing that are being used to preserve the most significant accomplishments of the University during President McRobbie’s tenure.  The first of these projects was the completion of a custom scrap book and enclosure that houses the President’s office materials related to the awarding of the Noble Prize in Economics which was presented to Dr. Elinor Ostrom.  Several staff members of the Lab worked on this project.  Photos documenting the final product as well as a short description can be found elsewhere on this blog.

Garry Harrison was called on to advise the staff at the Cook Music Library on a mold remediation issue of materials and artifacts from the Leonard Bernstein Estate.  After discussing the issue with the Music Library staff, the Preservation Lab provided the Music Library with a HEPA vacuum, dry cleaning sponges, and personal protective equipment for use in the cleaning of the affected items.  Garry also responded to a mold question that came from the IUL Technical Services department.

Harrison gave advice to Allison Stankrauff of IU South Bend regarding locating a conservator for a grant-funded project to preserve a gift collection at IUSB.

Sanders worked with the Institute for American Thought at IUPUI on a NEH Preservation Grant application.  His work included visiting the institute, devising a list of storage materials that would need to be purchased to preserve the materials should the grant be forthcoming, and writing a letter of support for the application.

Mary Graham Uthuppuru has been heavily involved in exhibition preparation in the Lilly Library due to the various Lilly 50th Anniversary exhibits.  The most significant exhibition to date this year has been the exhibition in the Main Gallery Treasures of the Lilly. In addition the Lincoln room contains the exhibition materials related to One Book, One Bloomington – The Adventures of Cavalier and Clay by Michael Chabon.

Beginning in March, Mary has been working with students from SLIS who are enrolled in a course that requires that they install an exhibition.  Every Monday this has meant that two students install, while two other students take down, an exhibition.  This assignment provides the students with in-depth, hands-on experience in the exhibition process.

Mary completed the writing of a training manual for students on the housing and computer procedures used by her in Lilly Conservation.  This manual provides a cohesive, and thorough, reference for students to consult as needed.

Mary also announced that she would be resigning her position at Indiana University effective April 15 in order to pursue personal projects.  She will be greatly missed.

Miriam Nelson, Anitta Salkola-White, and Nicole Wolfersberger submitted a joint proposal for the Herbert and Virginia White Award to fund professional development opportunities.  In addition to working on a proposal that would benefit them, they also considered their colleagues elsewhere in IUL and added an open presentation to be held at the Lilly Library as a part of their application.

There were a number of short-term items that involved various members of the Preservation Lab staff including: guest lecture for SLIS course being taught by Cherry Williams, tours of the Lab, and offering advice to the GIKCS, Kinsey Library and IUAM on preservation issues.

The Preservation Advisory Committee was reconstituted and held it first meeting.  Two topics for further investigation were discussed: (1) large-scale, on-going deacidification with a possible emphasis on materials that come from Latin or South America, Tibet, Eastern Europe or China; and, (2) brittle books.

Upcoming Projects

Doug Sanders is working to put the Leafcaster machine in operation.  This device has been in the Lab for a number of years but has apparently never been used.  Sanders is familiar with its basic operation and hopes to have it operational in the near term.

Sanders and Wolfersberger have had an article accepted for publication in the Spring 2010 issue of Guild of Bookworkers Journal.  The title of the article is:  Ergonomics and injury prevention in the book and paper lab.

Two long-term projects, the rehousing of several hundred medieval illuminated manuscript fragments and a stabilization effort for several hundred severely damaged manuscript leaves from the Thiebault collection, for Lilly Library are underway.

ACRL Awards Ceremony

Indiana University – Bloomington received the 2010 ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award given by ACRL and YPB to recognize “an outstanding community college, college, and university library each year. This award is to recognize the accomplishments of librarians and other library staff as they come together as members of a team to support the mission of their institution.”  The award was presented to Dean Brenda Johnson at a ceremony held in the Wells Library lobby on April 1, 2010.  Here are a few photographs from that ceremony.

Presidential Scrapbook

A few months ago we were approached by President Michael McRobbie’s office to create a series of scrapbooks commemorating achievements during his tenure. The first is an album recording the events around the 2009 Nobel Prize Awards Ceremony honoring Elinor Ostrom as one of the two winners of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences.

Mr. and Mrs. McRobbie were part of the group of delegates from IU who attended the ceremony. The album serves as a scrapbook for programs, menus, tickets and other ephemera from their trip to Stockholm.

clamshell with contents

Nicole Wolfersberger and Doug Sanders constructed the album to hold the items collected. The Office of Creative Services along with the President’s Office selected materials and determined the final layout of contents.

Scrapbook layout

The album is a post-bound structure covered in Canapetta bookcloth with contrasting Asahi bookcloth pastedowns. Post-bound structures are notorious for not opening to the gutter, so we tackled the problem by hinging conjugate leaves to stubs. The stubs were created using 40-point board to compensate for the swell that would occur when the album was full. As you can see in the picture, the pages drape well and open fully. On the cover we created a circular recess to hold a foil wrapper from a chocolate coin given at the banquet to represent the Nobel medal.

Scrapbook binding

Many items were too thick to be supported by the cover-weight paper used in the album. Anitta Salkola-White and Miriam Nelson created trays to hold these objects. To lessen overall weight, archival corrugated stock was used, covered with matching bookcloth. The ribbons provide access for removal.

item traystack of trays

Due to the size and weight of the album and trays, a sturdy double-walled clamshell box was made, covered with the same cloth as the album. This collection of materials will be used by the President’s office to promote achievements of those affiliated with Indiana University. Eventually, it will find a home in the University Archives.
Stay tuned for more albums!

ALF2 construction update – February 19, 2010

The roof of ALF2 is just about to be finished (or at least it seems that way). Several of the machines that have been doing the heavy lifting have been taken away and most, if not all, of the ceiling struts look to be in place. These photos were taken on February 18 and show how much has been completed in the past few weeks.

Statistical Report – Craig Lab – 2nd Quarter 2009

Preservation Lab
2nd Quarter 2009 – Report

This report covers the period April 1, 2009 – June 30, 2009

Doug Sanders, Nicole Wolfersberger, Garry Harrison and Lynn Hufford were all involved in presentations at the Society of Indiana Archivist annual meeting held at IU Bloomington in May. Doug and Nicole conducted a workshop on basic paper preservation skills. Garry and Lynn gave a presentation on Disaster Response Triage.

Hufford continued to serve as the convener of the CIC – Preservation Officers group. The primary task during this period was to coordinate a conference call to decide on the agenda for the CIC-PO meeting which was scheduled to coincide with the annual meeting of the American Library Association.

Hufford served on the IUL Assessment Committee and met with Jim Shelf and Steve Hiller when they visited IUB as part of a renewed effort to implement an on-going assessment process within IUL.

Hufford was asked to visit Lakeview Elementary School’s Library/Media Center to review plans that were underway for the renovation of that space. He also was asked to photograph a fund-raising auction and then donated the images to the coordinators of that auction to use for publicity for their on-going efforts. In addition, Hufford volunteered with the Sycamore Land Trust and was asked to donate some of his photos to the Land Trust Alliance (one of, if not the, largest land trust organizations in the U.S.) for use in a grant application the LTA was submitting.

Hufford attended two workshops on CSS (Cascading Style Sheets).

Hufford and Harrison hosted a tour of the Lab for members of the CIC who were in Bloomington for a CIC-related event.

Harrison, Anitta Salkola-While, and Miriam Nelson responded to a request to examine a potential mold problem with a collection of library materials located in the Herbarium Library. Several hundred books needed treatment which took nearly a week to perform.

Harrison completed a significant and substantial update of the online Conservation Manual.

IUL received several hundred boxes of materials from a retired faculty member (Van der Smissen). It was determined that prior to sending these items to technical services for processing Preservation would use our walk-in freezers to exterminate insects that might be lurking in these materials. This project is on-going and will take until approximately the end of the current calendar year to complete.

Fortunately we only had a few minor wet book issues to deal with during this period. These included receiving and treating material from the Geology Library, Life Science Library, Mail Room, and the Fine Arts Library.

Conservation Treatment Statistics
Month Level 1 Level 2 Level 3 Enclosures Bindery
04/09 212 68 21 563 32
05/09 267 64 32 503 23
06/09 227 34 38 434 38

Totals: Level I = 706, Level II = 196, Level III = 91
Enclosures = 1,500
Bindery = 93
Total: 2,586

Doug Sanders and Nicole Wolfersberger took part in an Ergonomic assessment of the Paper Lab which, among other things, led to their authoring a manuscript which has been submitted to publication to the Guild of Bookworkers Journal. The working title of their article is: Ergonomics and Injury in the Book and Paper Lab.

Sanders taught two seminars for a SLIS course. These covered cataloging terms associated with paper and parchment evidence, and the history of library preservation.

Sanders completed his service as the PA representative to the Library Budgetary Affairs Committee and was elected Secretary of the IUB Professional Council.

Sanders responded to several preservation-related questions from the general community.

The Paper Lab hired a part-time hourly employee to begin the work of encapsulating posters for the Government Publications collection. These date from WWII. This work is on-going and statistics for it will be reported once the project is complete.

Material work on by the Paper Lab included:
Lilly Library 56 items
Geology Library 6 items
Wells Library 15 items

Herb McBride, using the Kasemake Boxmaking machine, created enclosures for 1,463 items during this quarter. These included:
Lilly Library 1,001 enclosures
Lilly Lab 132 enclosures
General Collections 72 enclosures
ALF 2 enclosures
Law Library 157 enclosures
Music Library 99 enclosures

Peggy Houston and her staff in Binding Preparation processed 4,049 items during the quarter. These included:

Serials 2,966
MPPF 409
PBMP 217
Mono 220
HPB 223

From the paper lab – playing on the job

Since we focus on preservation of flat paper items, the paper lab receives some of the most unusual items from the libraries.  As a collector and playing card afficionado, I was delighted when we received several incomplete decks of Persian Âs Nas cards from the Lilly Library for treatment.

Âs Nas, the probable predecessor of modern Poker, reached the height of its popularity in the Seventeenth Century.  The cards are slightly smaller in size than modern playing cards, and were usually hand-painted on cardboard and then lacquered, making them somewhat thicker than modern cards as well.

The layer of thick, tacky lacquer on each card was causing them to stick to each other, so we needed a housing solution that kept the cards separate from one another.  Since the backs of the cards are blank, it wasn’t of utmost importance that the back be visible, but we did want them to be accessible in case a researcher needed to examine them.

The cards were carefully measured, put in order by size and with the help of Herb McBride and our handy Kasemake box-making machine, we designed custom trays made of matboard with a bed for each card.

Âs Nas cards in tray

Once the cards were put in place, Mary Uthuppuru suggested making sliding mylar windows, to keep the cards secure while still allowing for removal if necessary.

Sliding mylar window

Now the cards can be stored flat in a custom clamshell box.

Card trays in custom clamshell box.

More information about Âs Nas can be found here.

– Nicole Wolfersberger, paper lab technician