This year, the Poetry Center was granted a 2016 NEH Preservation Assistance Grant for Smaller Institutions, which we used to purchase equipment to help protect and preserve the books we have here at our library. Here are some images of that equipment in action, along with a little bit about what each item does.
While not the most exciting piece of equipment, the flat cart is used for transporting rare collection items from place to place safely. Pictured here with Librarian Wendy Burk.
The environmental monitor allows us to measure relative humidity, temperature, and light levels; all of these are important for us to track for the long-term health of our collections. This picture of Senior Library Assistant Julie Johnson with the monitor shows her measuring light levels by our exhibit cases.
The foam book supports come in several sizes and are designed to support the bindings of rare, fragile, and heavy books, so that they can be read and displayed without damage. The “snake weights” pictured help keep a book open to a given page. Library Specialist Sarah Kortemeier demonstrates with a rare copy of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales.
Thanks to grants like these, the books in our library will last longer so our patrons can continue to enjoy them.