The Abbey Newsletter

Volume 22, Number 6


EROMM's Scope Expands

The European Register of Microform Masters, only ten years old, is increasing its coverage rapidly. It is now adding Latin American microforms to its database, and is thinking about adding South Africa and Australia. In addition, it has begun accepting records of digitized items "from any library that pledges to indefinitely store and refresh the digital file of the image scanned from the original."

EROMM was set up in 1989 by the Commission of the European Union (CEU), to avoid duplication of effort in microforms by keeping track of material already on film.

EROMM records show the technical features of microforms and digital forms, and indicate where the preservation masters are held. Copies can be made in a variety of formats. To request a copy of a master, or for more information, visit the Website:

This information is from an article by Hans Rütimann in CLIR Issues #7, Jan/Feb. 1999, p. 4-5. CLIR Issues is a publication of the Council on Library and Information Resources, 1755 Massachusetts Ave. NW, Suite 500, Washington, DC 20036 (202/939-4750).

Papyrology Home Page

The Gazette du livre médiéval has a new section called "Sur Internet" (which, of course, is French for "on the Internet"). In the most recent issue, seven sites are described, in the language of their country of origin. Four are described in Italian, two in English, and one in French. Their topics are archives, medieval studies, papyrology, early music and alchemy.

The Papyrology Home Page, described on p. 81, is at, and it is worth visiting. It contains a great deal of technical information, some of it useful to conservators (e.g. a link to a page on "Recording, Processing and Archiving Carbonized Papyri"). It is maintained by the Catholic University of America and eight other universities: Michigan, Duke, Yale, Heidelberg, Giessen, Lecce, Saskatchewan and Copenhagen. (3A5.3)

Changes at Two National Preservation Offices

Australia: The AICCM National Newsletter for December says "The old National Preservation Office (NPO) has transmogrified into the National Initiatives & Collaboration Branch (NIAC). The NIAC deals with the Community Heritage Grants previously organized by the NPO. For further information, check the world wide web at or contact Joanne Paull, Community Heritage Grants & Conspectus, National Initiatives & Collaboration Branch, tel. [61] (2) 6262-1522, fax: (2) 6273-4535,"

England: The National Preservation Office was reorganized in 1996/97 (management structure, financial base, all that), and as a result, the NPO's newsletter, Library Conservation News, was replaced by the twice-yearly NPO Journal (ISSN 1461 4154). Although published by the NPO in the British Library, subscriptions to the NPO Journal are handled by Turpin Distribution Services Ltd., Blackhorse Road, Letchworth, Hertfordshire SG6 1HN (Fax: 44 1462 480947). They cost £20 per year (£24 overseas air mail).

Two-Year Residencies in Photo Conservation

The George Eastman House and the Image Permanence Institute will offer advanced-level, two-year residencies in photograph conservation beginning in September 1999. The educational content of the program will cover technology, treatment, and research methods. (Research will be taught at the IPI during both years.)

The fellowship includes a stipend of $28,500 per year for living expenses, travel and supplies. Tuition is $12,000 per year, but can be waived in case of need. Deadline for application is past (Mar. 1). For information call Grant B. Romer at George Eastman House, 716/271-3361.

Wei T'o Adopts Improved Solvent: HFC-134a

Richard Smith announced at the 1998 ALA and AIC meetings that he had found a new solvent for the mass deacidification installation at the National Library of Canada: HFC-134a, the nonflammable tetrafluoroethane that has replaced Halon in auto and domestic air conditioning refrigeration. HFC-134a solves some of the problems of the original formulation that concerned librarians, including ozone layer destruction (this solvent has no effect), dissolution of certain inks (this has no effect on alcohol-soluble inks), bloom or white deposits on covers and illustrations on coated paper (this leaves far fewer deposits), and loosening of perfect bindings (this has no effect). Although it is expensive to buy, it is affordable for mass deacidification installations because the solvent is recovered offsite by Wei T'o and reused.

HFC-134a is not the only solvent in any Wei T'o solution, but it is the major solvent used in the mass deacidification facility in Canada. It has a flammable twin, HFC-152a (1,1,Difluoroethane), that is used in four of the company's new products (two sprays and two solutions) on the retail market, as a minor but necessary component. Other products using the new solvents will be introduced. For the present, some older formulations continue to be offered.

For detailed information on these new solvents and products, including Material Safety Data Sheets, contact Wei T'o Associates, Inc., 21750 Main St., Unit #27, Matteson, IL 60443 (708/747-6660, fax 747-6639, e-mail, web site http:/").

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