Housings and Protective Enclosures
The Preservation Department provides a variety of housings and protective enclosure solutions for all library and archives collections. We can exercise a wide range of options to meet the needs of the items, scale of a project, budget, and other factors. Housings are created in our conservation laboratories as well as purchased from outside vendors, both pre-fabricated in standard sizes and custom-fitted.
The most common reasons for creating enclosures are:
For general collections
- Fragile, brittle, and/or deteriorated items that are not candidates for reformatting and for which repair or treatment is not advantageous or possible
- Items that consist of multiple parts with a single call number for which commercial binding is not suitable
- To make thin, soft cover materials (e.g. pamphlets) sturdier for shelving and use
- To protect books moved to a new location or LSF
For special collections
- To reduce the negative effects of relative humidity changes on sensitive materials like parchment and vellum bindings
- To reduce handling risks for individual flat objects such as art-work, prints, photographs, and fragile documents
- To protect adjacent books from edge clasps and other decorations
- To protect unique or decorative bindings
- To address shelving and issues for non-book collection objects
Protective housings and enclosure workflows exist in all of the Department’s units, consult our Quick Reference – Preservation Workflow Chart for directing your questions or work requests.
For information about the different types of enclosures used for library materials see our illustrated housing/enclosure reference chart.