Over the past 2 years, I’ve worked with the Professional Center Library to set up a small preservation area. This week, Angie Hobbs from PCL came over to ZSR and we worked for a few hours on some of her more pesky repairs. We consolidated a text block and applied end sheets; replaced a spine; re-attached a loose text block to its cover; repaired rotted leather hinges using Japanese paper; and covered an assortment of other small repair issues. This not only helps PCL with their preservation training, but it also helps me to review these techniques under a watchful eye. It was a good session which will hopefully continue to produce good will.
In the 'Preservation' Category...
On Thursday, Nov. 29th, eight history students in Dr. Jeff Lerner’s Roman History class stood in the library entrance and made their presentations. After working through the semester on the research, meeting with me on their exhibit design, and constructing their exhibit- each student was ready to present their work to the entire class of 28. All the exhibits were generally about Ancient Rome. Some students worked mostly on their own and needed little help or assistance. Most students, however, worked in Preservation and did most of the construction there using the library as a resource for books and other resources. It is a gratifying and worthwhile experience to work with these students and see their final products materialize. Images of the exhibits can be seen at the ZSR Flickr page: http://www.flickr.com/photos/zsrlibrary/sets/72157600032772399/
On Wenesday, November 14, I taught a book repair workshop for the NCSLMA (North Carolina School Library Media Association. This workshop was sponsored by the North Carolina Preservation Consortium (NCPC). The workshop was a pre-conference offering for the NCSLMA Annual conference held at the Benton Convention Center in Winston-Salem. I had 22 media coordinators to teach repair techniques. The day flew by as I tried in vain to keep up with these teachers-no matter what I did, they always went ahead of where I was in the teaching process. Teachers are often on their own and have to solve problems with no outside help-so during this workshop, they just did what they thought most natural—-forge ahead! Meanwhile, I was trotting behind calling-“hey Wild Bill, wait for me!” We covered spine replacement, torn pages, tipping in pages, tightening hinges and many other things. It was a good day spent helping these media coordinators who don’t really have any resources for book repair in their home schools.
Joe Harrington and his quick thinking student Alex Chung alerted me to a water leak this week on Wilson 6. A heating duct was leaking on a section of a range in the HF’s. We quickly removed the books in harms way and placed a plastic trash can to catch the water. In all, about 50 titles were affected. We lost about 25 titles due to water saturation, but these titles are duplicated in our collection in several other formats. Those titles we recovered will be fan-dried and pressed in Preservation before being returned to the stacks. Thanks Joe and Alex!
I had the opportunity to learn a 14th century binding style in a workshop Oct 23-26. Using signatures that were sewn over alum-tawed leather thongs, we made a cover for this binding from calfskin vellum. Vellum is a term that is often interchangeable with parchment, but usually parchment refers to goat/sheepskin and vellum to calfskin. Vellum was used for many things, including covers for texts. After centuries of use, it came to replace papyrus as the preferred writing surface. Only when paper became readily available was vellum replaced for writing and printing purposes.
John S. Walker, who volunteered at ZSR from 2000-2003 in Preservation and passed away in 2005, has donated his books on Japan to the Z. Smith Reynolds Library. A few weeks back, I drove to his home and picked up many boxes of books. Charles Bombeld helped sort through and accept approximately 80 of these titles on Japan. On October, 16, Charles and I took the remaining books to Dr. David Phillips in the East Asian Studies Department in Carswell Hall. These titles will help strengthen the ZSR collection in East Asian Studies.