Monday, May 2, 2011

Organizing the Memorabilia: Preserving Newspapers

Modesto Bee on May 2, 2011 - image from Newseum

If you want to keep certain newspapers — the paper from the day your child was born, papers that feature friends or family members, papers capturing historic events — then it's worth knowing how to save them properly.

Fortunately, there are plenty of resources on the web to help us out, including:
- How can I preserve an important edition of a newspaper? from the National Archives
- Preserving Newspaper Mementos, from Newseum
- Preserving Newspapers, by Kathy Ludwig with Bryan Johnson (a PDF version of the Minnesota History Interpreter)
- Preserving Newspapers, from the CUA Libraries
- Preserving Newspapers, from the Charlotte Museum of History (PDF)

You'll want to store them flat, not folded. Keep them away from the light, and store them somewhere that doesn't have large fluctuations in temperature and humidity. You're looking for somewhere cool and dry: 60-70 degrees F and 40-50% relative humidity are ideal. (Attics, basements and garages are generally not recommended.) And you'll want to save them in acid-free containers.

newspaper storage box

To get the supplies suggested by these articles, you can go to Gaylord, Light Impressions, or Hollinger Metal Edge. (The photo above shows some newspaper storage boxes from Hollinger Metal Edge.)

Update on Feb. 13, 2012: There are reports of numerous problems with Light Impressions, so you may want to buy elsewhere. Besides the companies mentioned above, another one I've heard recommended is Talas.

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