I inherited a book from my mother, who had received it as a gift from her great-aunt Flo last century. It is an 1856 full color and gold leaf illustrated edition of Longfellow’s poem “The Builders”. While it is not in perfect, mint condition (it has, after all, passed through three owners and has been actually read, that is, used as a book and not as an art object) it is still in very good condition and I’d like to preserve it for future generations (my niece on my side of the family is Designated Heir when I’m no longer around - we’ve decided to pass this through a maternal line).
The pages are still white, as they used MUCH better paper in those days. The binding is starting to get a little weak, but all pages are still attached. I have no intention of selling it, as it has far too much sentimental value as well as being an heirloom.
However - how should I protect this? I feel it would be a bit vulnerable out in the open on an ordinary bookshelf. I have a small fireproof box I keep valuable papers in, but I’m not sure if there’s any sort of out gassing from it I have to worry about or not. I’m thinking that wrapping it in archival tissue when I’m not actually reading it might be the best way to go. I am concerned about moisture/water damage, though - is there a safe sort of ziplock bag for something like this?
I can’t afford a ton of cash outlay on preserving this - not because I don’t want to do it, but because I just don’t have a ton of cash right now. I’d also like to keep it accessible so when I do want to read it, or just look at the color plates, it’s a straightforward thing to do.
(Mods - I figured preservative techniques was factual, but if you want to move it ot IMHO I’m totally cool with that)