What is the best way to preserve and store newspapers?

September 25, 2008 by · 11 Comments 

Morris Brill asks several great questions concerning the rare newspaper hobby. I’ll address each over the next several days, beginning with his first:

“What is the best way to preserve and store newspapers?”

I’ve considered several methods through the years. At first I was using large plastic bags and opening the four page papers and slipping them within, then taping & cutting the bag to the size of the newspaper. This way all pages could be read while being protected by the plastic.  But this obviously didn’t work if the newspaper had more than four pages.

I’ve considered encapsulation but it is relatively expensive and doesn’t provide the tactile experience so important in this hobby: one needs to touch & feel the paper to better “experience its history”.

After a few other failed experiments at proper storage I decided to customize a product I saw for storage of maps and documents. Since appropriate sizes for newspapers were not available we started making them in-house using archival material, now available on our website in eight sizes. These folders also allows the collection to label and make comment on the front of the folder. The newspapers slip in and out of the folders very easily to allow examination of all pages and that important “tactile experience”. I believe University Products offers a similar product but the sizes are not necessarily proportioned for newspapers.

I also like the newspaper storage boxes which University Products offers, and I categorize the newspapers, in folders, by era, one era per box. I find these boxes to be very nice for storing a personal collection and are advertised as being made of archival materials. They are quite strong as well.

If the desire is to show the newspapers to others or for display at a show or convention I might recommend presentation cases which we use for display. We received so much call for this product that we become distributors, now available on our website.

Best also to keep newspapers our of sunlight and high humidity. Newspapers can be professionally matted & framed quite safely, and UV glass is available if the newspaper will be displayed where the sun will hit it at some point in the day. But I would still avoid contact with the sun as much as possible.

More later!