The Conservation Division (CD) ensures continued access to the Library’s special collections by providing assessments, surveys, reviews, housing, stabilization, and treatment of objects for research, exhibits, digitization, loans, and collection moves and other storage improvements.
Conservation staff undertake and publish new research, and participate in workshops, conferences, and other collaborative arrangements nationally and internationally. Staff also exchange knowledge through lectures, symposia, tours, and teaching arrangements. Whenever possible, the outreach offerings provided by preservation and conservation staff at the Library are accessible live via webcast.
The Conservation Division hosts advanced conservation interns, student interns, and volunteers in the specialty areas of book, paper, and photograph conservation, and collections stabilization and rehousing.
Preventive Conservation/Preservation Management
Conservation Division staff members monitor, analyze, and continually work to optimize storage and exhibit environments in the Library buildings on Capitol Hill as well as in Landover and Fort Meade, Maryland and in Culpeper, Virginia.
Conservation staff members also assess development plans affecting Library storage, including buildings, stack spaces, and furniture; source preservation supplies for all curatorial housing and labeling needs; design and create new housing and storage solutions to rehouse collections; and prepare collections for optimized storage.
Finally, Conservation Division provides handling guidance and regular emergency preparedness training.
Conservation Treatment Work
Beyond preventive work, Conservation staff members provide active care for the Library's special collections through conservation treatments and research, and by leading and deploying the emergency response following events that threaten collections.
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