100 year old Print! What's the best way to archive / display?

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I have a OLD Family Picture that we think was made between 1900 and 1905. It's about 5x7 light brown, washed out looking. It is mounted on a thick green mat. Some small pieces of the picture have crumbled at the edges but not any of the main subject. It also has a small interesting spot near the corner that may have happened during the development on the print.

1. I would like frame the picture to display but I want to make sure it is preserved for the future generations.

2. I want to make some photos of the picture. Should they be large, medium, or 35mm format.

-- Rodney Durrett (rodney.durrett@adtran.com), November 28, 2000



If you want the print to last, I would recommend NOT displaying it, but instead making a good copy, either conventionally with camera and copy neg and then printing as usual, or by scanning it and making a digital neg/print. The copy could then be displayed (and other copies distributed to whomever would like them) without endangering the original.

It's difficult to tell from your description whether the print is in good condition or not. The fact that it is "washed out looking" could mean image degradation due to improper fixing, etc. This would only accelerate with constant exposure to light. It might be possible to unmount the print, re-fix and wash, but probably the best thing is just to store it as "archivally" as possible in an acid-free, dark, low humidity environment. Check with a photo archivist at a local museum if there is one in your area about the possibility of an inspection, evaluation and subsequent advice on how to best preserve the photo you have.

Regards, ;^D)

-- Doremus Scudder (ScudderLandreth@compuserve.com), November 29, 2000.

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