Gardner's Publication
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  Conservation Work

Conservation Report

In 1995, John Dean, director of Cornell University Library’s Department of Preservation and Collection Maintenance, performed significant conservation on the two-volume work, Gardner’s Photographic Sketch Book of the War, at the request of the donors, Thomas A. Mann ’64 and Diann Goodman Mann ’66.

Summary of Treatment

Soiling and some loose surface mold were removed by dry cleaning with soft erasers. Tears were repaired with tissues and rice-starch paste. Acid-neutral glassine used to act as protection guards for each photograph (to reduce edge damage, the glassine was restricted to the area of the print). The endleaves were removed and not replaced because of their deteriorated condition. The marbled paper flyleaves were soaked off the deteriorated support leaves, sized and dried before remounting on a buffered paper. New cloth joints to match the originals were sewn into the structure and around attached linen tapes with unbleached linen thread.

The backbone had all original paper linings soaked off, and as much off the original animal glue as possible. A thin Japanese tissue lining was attached to the backbone with rice starch /polyvinyl acetate (PVA) mixture, and the original endbands reattached. Linen tapes were attached with PVA, and the boards firmly secured by laying the tapes onto the upper surface of the boards beneath the lifted leather. Permalife bond paper further secured the joints across the back, and four leather strips were laid across the backs on top of the tapes to reinforce the back opening. The board corners were reinforced with new board and goatskin leather, and the new goatskin spines created and underlaid beneath the original. All leather was attached with rice starch paste after being treated on the flesh side with potassium lactate. The new cloth joints were glued onto the inner board areas, and the old paste-down reset. Abrasions and scars to the original leather surfaces were filled and colored with acrylic. Gold lines were tooled across the spine and aged, and part of the fillet-lines on the front cover tooled (the ornamental roll could not be matched with any reasonable faithfulness, so it was left blank). A leather dressing of SC 6000 acrylic wax was applied to all surfaces as a protective coating.

The boxes were constructed from a buffered board with Red Label binders’ board reinforcement, and constructed from buckram. The linings and a portion of the cover were from an acid-free stock.

All work was performed by John F. Dean, Director, Department of Preservation and Collection Maintenance.

July 1995

 

Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the War

Cornell University

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