Top of page

Category: Preservation

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Preservation Intern Profile: Gabrielle Alongi

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a joint post by Aaron Chaletzky and Gabrielle Alongi. This past June, the Preservation Services Division (PSD) took on a new Preservation Intern: Gabrielle Alongi. Gabrielle is currently enrolled in the Information Sciences program at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. She comes to PSD with an interest in digital library and management work, …

At-risk General Collection books. Photo Credit: Ronald J. Murray

Preservation Intern Profile: Julie Pramis

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a joint post by Aaron Chaletzky and Julie Pramis. This past January, the Preservation Services Division (PSD) took on a new Preservation Intern: Julie Pramis. Julie is currently enrolled in the Masters of Science in Library and Information Science program (MLIS) at the Catholic University of America (CUA). She comes to PSD with …

At-risk General Collection books. Photo Credit: Ronald J. Murray

2022 Librarian in Residence Reflection

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a guest post by Brandi Marulli, 2022 Librarian in Residence, Preservation Directorate. Support of the next generation of librarians and leaders is an integral part of the mission of The Library of Congress, with a multitude of people of all ages and backgrounds serving in 80 different programs. The Internship and Fellowship Programs …

Copying selected files onto an external hard drive. Photo credit: Amanda May

Portable and Complex – Preserving Born-Digital Data on Laptops

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a guest post written by Amanda May, Digital Projects Specialist in the Preservation Services Division. Her work includes managing digital files for the division, recovering data from removable media in Library collections, and providing consultation and services for born-digital collections data. Born-digital preservation work most often begins with a physical object – a …

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Working at Scale: The Firehose of Data

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

The Library of Congress is the largest library in the world with over 173 million cataloged items. For the past decade, digitization of this enormous collection has increased exponentially. The Preservation Services Division (PSD) is responsible for a huge portion of this effort, managing contracts for the digitization of millions of pages of books, newspapers, and microfilm frames each year. All of this imaging results in a lot of data, hundreds of millions of files, and this is how we manage that data.

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Take that you filthy red rot!

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

Libraries are beautiful, filthy places. The dirt you encounter here is more than just the dust you would expect in any building, it is the dust of decay. It is the whisper of tired books becoming brittle and disintegrating, microfilm breathing its last gasp, newspapers shriveling into nothingness, leather dissolving into powder. Of all of these ingredients, red rot is probably the most pervasive dust you would come across.

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Preservation Intern Profile: Brandon Mack

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a guest post by Brandon Mack, Preservation Services Division Intern The Library of Congress is magical. That is the best way I can explain my experience. The scope, the people, and the history have all blown my mind at every step of my internship. It also helps that as an intern for the …

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Performing Quality Review of Digital Images

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a guest post written by Katie Daughtry, Digital Library Technician in the Preservation Services Division. The Reformatting Projects Section (RPS) in the Preservation Services Division reformats collection materials in order to preserve the information found in at-risk materials and to allow access by researchers. General Collections books that are crumbling and contain highly …

Close-up view of two hands carefully at work on an aged, yellowing manuscript with handwriting

Book Cloth Coverings: When Demand Exceeds Supply

Posted by: Aaron D. Chaletzky

This is a guest post by Clifton (Cliff) Fulwood, Head, Processing and Preparation Section in the Preservation Services Division. When library books are re-bound, a durable cover material called buckram is often used. Libraries have been using this material for well over 75 years, but due to a variety of changes in both libraries and commercial bindery supply lines this material is now in short supply.