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Preserving your precious photographs and memories...

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Our associations with our everyday snapshot collections are valued by our relationship with and to them. Photographs of ancestors stir our imagination and interest more than unidentified whimsical photographs we happen to collect. A photograph of a historical site can be found anywhere but it is not the same as the one taken by our father. The value difference between them is one thing, sentimental!

We lend value to a photograph based on that one equation, sentimentality. So many times photographs are passed along without identification, snapping the sentimentality associated with them. Could this be the reason and importance of identification and proper labeling of these frozen moments in time?

Information associated with an image makes a world of difference in how it is valued by others. Never write on a print with a pen, the ink which may have chemicals that will damage the picture or bleed through to the image. Write on the back, using a dark pencil, and don't press so hard as to damage the front side. At the least, put the date and names of persons shown and/or location of the photo. If you store them in clear plastic sleeves, don't put two pictures back-to-back in one sleeve -- leave the back visible so you can see if there are any notes without having to remove the picture from its sleeve. A recent restoration removed from its frame reveled that the photograph was taken in 1901 in St. Louis sparked a genealogy hunt by the family. They were from Australia believing they arrived in the US in 1932. Surprise, surprise!

Enter Digital Imaging

What a difference 168 years or so can make. An entirely new generation of imaging has overtaken the pinhole camera by telephone cameras and optical captures smaller than a credit card. In return for this metamorphosis, we have gained independence from chemical deterioration and vast tools to repair what we would have considered previously as worthless trash.

Manipulation and repairs are now affordable with dramatic effects and unmatched realism when entrusted to talented professionals. Storage of hundreds of images are contained on a shiny disk with nearly unlimited information space to compliment and support.

Please take a moment to re-evaluate those boxes of mementos and consider whether your memories will be reduced to recycled paper or shared by your family for generations to come.

 

 

 

 

"A look back into the past is the responsibility of the present to guarantee the same privilege for the future!"

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As the information above has been intended to provide some thoughts about preserving your precious memento's the links provided below are excellent sources for actual preservation instructions.

The American Institute for Conservation of Historic & Artistic Works

Photo Preservation Here is a summary for preserving photographs at the "no compromise" storage level: ... Conservation of Photographs. Rochester, NY; Eastman Kodak Co.,

Preservation and Archives Professionals – How can I safely mount my documents, memorabilia, and photographs into albums or scrapbooks? ... The U.S. National Archives and Records Administration.

Caring for Your Photographic Collections– Preventing Deterioration, Handling Photographic Materials, and Storage of Photographic Materials are discussed.

 

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