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An Ounce of Preservation : A Guide to the Care of Papers and Photographs Paperback – January 1, 1995


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 111 pages
  • Publisher: Rainbow Books; First Edition. First Printing. edition (January 1, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1568250215
  • ISBN-13: 978-1568250212
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #606,222 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

Archivist Craig Tuttle's book, targeted at the lay person, provides the answer to the question of how to preserve papers and photographs. In An Ounce of Preservation, he provides a clear and concise discussion of the causes of paper and photograph deterioration and he teaches the reader to recognize the damage caused by such environmental conditions as temperature, humidity, fungi, insects and rodents, light exposure, pollutants, water damage, framing, lamination, fasteners and adhesives, fire and theft. Included in the long list of paper-based and photographic items which can be preserved and repaired are letters, books, posters, works of art on paper, certificates and awards, comic books, journals, scrapbooks, magazines, newspapers, stamps, report cards, sports cards, greeting cards, postcards, black and white and color photographs, negatives, slides and movie film. An Ounce of Preservation also includes information on the care and handling of paper-based items and photographic materials and techniques for the repair and cleaning of mildly damaged items. In addition, there are four appendices which provide a reference guide to damage/cause,a descriptive list of preservation supplies, where these supplies can be purchased and sources to contact for additional information on paper and photograph preservation. As an added bonus, the book includes a chapter on how to arrange paper and photographic collections for easy storage and retrieval. Also included is a preservation glossary, a bibliography, an index and 14 black and white photographs, which illustrate the different types of damage to paper-based items and photographs.

From Booklist

To collectors of photographs, documents, and books, preservation and conservation--" pres-con" to librarians--present problems pitting the physical needs of perishable materials against the constraints of time and money. Even stopgap measures carry costs, but inept, inadequate, or delayed attention may result in increased deterioration. Here is help for those willing and able to undertake pres-con by themselves. Functioning much as a stylebook does for writers, Tuttle's tidy guide prepares users for undertaking remedial measures. It presents information on paper, inks, environment, storage, and repair simply and clearly; considers the special needs of differing materials; and, in generous appendixes and a glossary, helps put users in touch with the specialized world of preservation and conservation. Know-how may not be an absolute substitute for time and money, but a little knowledge can help in taking proactive steps to protect and preserve two-dimensional materials. A valuable resource. Mike Tribby

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

74 of 80 people found the following review helpful By Martin Juergens on April 2, 2000
Format: Paperback
As a guide book written specifically for lay persons, An Ounce of Preservation has an educational mandate. As such, it is compelled to offer well-researched and accurate information in all details. At the same time, it attempts to simplify a highly complex field to fit the format of a short booklet that can be understood by a reader who has never concerned himself with document preservation before. The main dilemma of this book becomes apparent at the point where these two goals meet: simplification versus accuracy - can both coexist? Some critical observations must be made that demonstrate how the author has compromised the accuracy of his text by falling into some of the traps of over-simplification.
In the process of simplification, information must be excluded, and the choice of what to omit and what to highlight is not an easy one, particularly in view of the rich history of photographic processes. The guiding principle should be to describe foremost the processes most likely to be encountered by the family historian in his personal collection of historic documents. Unfortunately, Tuttle has decided to concentrate on less common processes. He mentions gelatin based black and white prints in only one sentence, and almost as an afterthought (p. 28), although this process accounted for the vast majority of all photographic prints for about 70 years. Collodion prints, though widespread and likely to be present in every album that goes back at least to the 1880s, are not even mentioned once. Rather, the author describes negatives in detail and even dedicates two sentences to albumen coated glass plates, which never abounded and are exceedingly rare today.
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19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 10, 1998
Format: Paperback
To learn more about old photographs and their care, I ordered three books; An Ounce of Preservation by Craig Tuttle, Collector's Guide to Early Photographs by O. Henry Mace, and Care and Identification of 19th Century Photographic Prints by James Reilly.
An Ounce of Preservation, A Guide to the Care of Papers and Photographs, is a small, almost pocket size book that can be read quickly. It has a good description of all the major types / categories of photographs (Daguerreotypes, Tintypes, Albumen, etc.) that have been produced since the birth of photography. It helps identify the specific type of damage likely to be found, and then provides advice to both reduce further deterioration and to treat the damage.
Unlike the other books, An Ounce of Preservation provides a background on the paper manufacturing process, which is helpful for understanding the base structure of an old photograph. Also unlike the other books, it also addresses the care of various other types of paper documents (manuscripts, postage stamps, trading cards, postcards, comic books, magazines, etc.)
This is a great book for gaining a basic understanding of the types / categories of old photographs in existence and easy-to-implement procedures for reducing their deterioration. Anyone who cares about maintaining old family records or local historical records would find this book very useful. If a detailed knowledge is desired regarding either the types of old photographs or the proper care for old paper based photographs, then one of the other two books I purchased would be better. However, the other two books are not as concise, and you would need to purchase both of them to learn about both the types of photographs and their care.
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on April 14, 1999
Format: Paperback
With no background in caring for old photos and papers, I was in a quandry over what to do with the box full of items left to me by my deceased uncle. I didn't have the money for a professional to refresh and repair the photos, many of which suffered from long years of neglect. So I went online in search of a publication that would tell me where to start. An Ounce of Preservation provided me, a true archival dummie, with the groundwork I needed to begin the restoration project. As I sent off for information from companies listed in the appendix of the book, I learned more and more, unti I now feel like a blooming expert! I have a great scrapbook of my uncle's photos that I can pass on to my grandchildren, and it's a scrapbook that takes care of the items instead of aiding in their destruction. Without all the easy-to-follow techniques and many, many leads for more information provided in the book, I doubt if I would have ever had the courage to tackle the job myself. And since I didn't have the money for professional help, all those precious items of family history would still be deteriorating away in my closet. I contacted the publisher (to find out how to contact the author) only to learn that a greatly expanded second edition of this book is in the works. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn the basics -- it was all news to me!
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