Have you ever wondered how archives and records are preserved? The brand new St. Louis office of the National Personnel Records Center describes how they prepare, repair, restore and preserve the national archives that we all love to view and obtain information from as we trace our family tree.
The preservation programs at the National Archives Records Centers work to not only protect and preserve national archives but they also accurately describe the records and make them available for the public who want to view the records and ensure confidentiality of the persons the records are about. As genealogists and family tree researchers, we know all too well how important the conservation, preservation and accurate data of archives and records play in our search to trace your family tree.
What does conservation mean?
“Conservation attempts to preserve records in their original format. Conservators examine records and assess their condition and the materials which comprise them. Conservators then recommend remedial treatments to arrest deterioration or to improve condition. As they perform the recommended treatments, conservators carefully document the condition of the record as well as the procedures performed and materials used.”
What does preservation mean?
“Preservation encompasses the activities which prolong the usable life of archival records. Preservation activities are designed to minimize the physical and chemical deterioration of records and to prevent the loss of informational content.”
The question that we are now asking ourselves is how we go about ensuring that we are protecting and preserving the family documents and records that we have in our possession? These documents that we have tracked down through our family tree research are so precious to us and we want to ensure that everything is done to protect them. The National Archives provide the following tips on preserving and protecting our own records. See the link below.
To read the article in full and see the pictures of the St. Louis National Personnel Records Center labs, see the link below:
To read the National Archives tips and hints for preserving our own family records and documents, see the link below: