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Category: Preservation

Bright daylight photo of a woman holding a child, standing in front of a display booth, watching a female Library technician point out something on a display board

Library Conservation Specialists Help Save Books, Artifacts After Disasters Around the World

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

Since a disastrous 1966 flood in Florence, Italy, Library conservation specialists have advised disaster victims around the world about how to salvage their damaged books and artifacts. One of the most recent emergencies was a 2023 flood in Vermont. A Library team spent just over two weeks in the region.

Black and whilte foto of several men and one woman sitting around a table. All are dressed in business attire and have somber expressions.

Beer Runs to the White House and Other Long-ago Radio Delights

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

As the clock struck 12:01 a.m. on Dec. 5, 1933, a truck full of beer departed Anheuser-Busch in St. Louis. KMOX CBS Radio excitedly broadcast the event to the nation -- Prohibition had ended. Beer was on en route to the White House. This slice of history is just one example of thousands of broadcasts that the Library's Radio Preservation Task Force have brought to light in archives across the country since its launch in December 2014.

Image of an ornate clock showing 2:05 with sculpted male figures sitting on each side of the clock face

Toy Theaters: 19th Century Home Entertainment

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

The Library has dozens of 19th century animated toy theaters that were wildly popular in Europe and the United States, displaying dashing stories of pirates, undersea adventures, magic and adventure. Conservators have been painstakingly mending damage caused by historical use, making sure researchers can draw insights from the theaters for years to come.

Image of an ornate clock showing 2:05 with sculpted male figures sitting on each side of the clock face

Omar Ibn Said: Conserving a One-of-a-Kind Manuscript

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

This is a guest post by Sylvia Albro, a senior paper conservator in the Conservation Division. Earlier this month, the Library released online the Omar Ibn Said Collection, including Ibn Said’s autobiography, the only known extant autobiography written in Arabic by an enslaved person in the United States. A wealthy and educated man, Ibn Said …

Image of an ornate clock showing 2:05 with sculpted male figures sitting on each side of the clock face

Hispanic Heritage Month: New Tools Uncover Surprises in Diego Rivera Paintings

Posted by: Wendi Maloney

This is a quest post by John Hessler, curator of the Jay I. Kislak Collection of the History and Archaeology of the Early Americas at the Library of Congress. He describes research and analysis he conducted with Tana Villafana and Meghan Wilson of the Library’s Preservation Research and Testing Division and Stephanie Stillo of the …