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Subject: Mold


From: Sharlane Gubkin <sxg7<-at->
Date: Friday, November 1, 2013
Does anyone know if there is any preservation literature on the
actual process of how to inspect gift books to rule out the presence
of bugs or mold?

We have always examined our library's incoming gift books as well as
our used book purchases from Alibris, etc. by conducting a visual
inspection of each volume and using a 10X loop to look at
questionable spots.  Besides noting any physical problems such as
brittle paper or conditions that would require rebinding or other
conservation work, we also look for mold and mildew, insects in all
life cycle stages, frass, holes in the paper or patterns of grazing
on the cover material, as well as removing any books with musty or
bad odors.

Recently we acquired a DinoLite digital microscope and (possibly)
due to the additional light and higher magnification have been
finding many more instances of confirmed bugs and larvae than was
typical formerly.

This has come up now because we received a very large gift from a
single donor in which dead carpet beetle larvae have been found in a
few of the books, but NO live insects, frass or live larvae have
been found.  Should the entire gift be discarded if there is not
enough money to freeze or treat? The great majority of the books
were in great condition and are free of any visible dead larvae and
any other insects, but were packed in the same boxes as books with
them. I suspect this is an old infestation and no longer active or a
threat, but can not guarantee it.  How does one determine with
certainty if an infestation is no longer active and poses no danger
to add to the collections?

Many centuries-old books that have been in our collections for many
years have some evidence of past insect damage, but have never
become active.

I have asked about this before but have not really heard many
specific suggestions or answers.  If anyone deals with this on a
regular basis, or is an expert, please advise.

                  Conservation DistList Instance 27:20
                 Distributed: Friday, November 1, 2013
                       Message Id: cdl-27-20-006
Received on Friday, 1 November, 2013

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