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Subject: AIC Angels project

AIC Angels project

From: Craig Deller <craig>
Date: Wednesday, March 26, 2003
The AIC Annual Meeting Registration brochure has now been mailed to
all AIC members, please consider planning to participate.

AIC Angels Project 2003
Naval Historical Center
Washington Navy Yard,  Washington DC

The Naval Historical Center (NHC) on the Washington Navy Yard has
been selected for this year's AIC Annual Angels Project.  Claire
Peachey, one of NHC's archaeological conservators, put together
their application this year to be the recipient of this year's
pro-bono work day.  The Yard was selected based on the strength of
Claire's description of both the resources available and the
tremendous need for help at the Yard.

The Naval Historical Center houses thousands of historic objects and
books related to the history of the U.S. Navy.  The Center's
components include the Navy Museum, responsible for display and
interpretation of objects, the Navy Library, responsible for
preservation and access of books and other documents, and the Navy
Curator, responsible for collections management and storage of
objects. Angels will be needed at all three sites on the Yard:

1.  NHC Curator Branch

The Curator Branch of the Naval Historical Center is responsible for
approximately 140,000 objects, among which are several thousand
flags. Included among this vast number of flags are several hundred
of particular historic significance.  Over the past few years an
effort has been made to begin to document and rehouse these historic
flags.  Approximately eighty have been rehoused.  However, the
question has arisen as to whether or not the methods used are
sufficient to insure the continued viability of the objects. The
vast majority of the flags are stored tightly rolled, wrapped in
acid-free paper, sealed in plastic bags and placed in large
cardboard boxes in a warehouse setting.

Angels will be needed to evaluate current storage of rehoused
historic flags, making recommendations and perhaps assisting with
any advised changes to current storage;   prepare a strategy for
tackling the historic flag collection and the large volume of other
flags, and to make specific recommendations for prioritizing,
rehousing, conservation, preservation and storage.

2.  NHC Navy Museum

The Navy Museum collects, preserves, displays and interprets
historic naval artifacts and artwork to inform, educate and inspire
naval personnel and the general public.  The Museum, housed in a
historic workshop building on the Washington Navy Yard, is open five
days a week and has an active education and outreach program, serves
as a venue for many Navy ceremonial events, and has a program of
evening concerts.  In fulfillment of its mission the museum displays
the finest examples of uniforms in the Naval Historical Center
collection.  Approximately thirty-five uniforms hang on mannequins
inside glass cases.  A conservation survey in 1998 identified the
uniform displays as an area that needed improvement.  Many of the
uniforms are in need of padding and refitting to provide better
support, separation of layers, and separation from the mannequins
themselves.  Squeezed between a limited budget and inadequate staff
numbers, the museum would benefit from professional guidance from
the Angels in the mounting of these nationally significant textiles,
which include uniforms of Admirals Dewey and Nimitz. The permanent
staff would gain from the practical instruction provided by the
conservators, as would the museum's interns (of whom there are
usually a half dozen during the summer).

3.  NHC Navy Department Library

The Navy Department Library, a two hundred year old institution,
houses the Navy's most valuable and historic collections of naval
literature.  Among its rare and unique materials is a collection of
more than 100 "bound with" volumes.  These materials contain a
variety of Navy-related original documents, journal articles,
brochures, etc. Because of their unique nature, the deterioration of
the bindings, the differing sizes of the items included, these
materials need to be removed from the bindings.  The instruction and
demonstration of techniques used to remove materials from a small
number of these volumes would be an invaluable aid to a small but
dedicated staff. It would not only assist on-going conservation
efforts, but would assist efforts to make early naval documents
accessible to its diverse community of users.

Angels are needed to discuss the evaluation process, including
identifying items that need further commercial preservation
services; demonstrate techniques used to remove materials from
bindings and offer suggestions for materials and tools not presently
included in the library's conservation supplies.

The Angels project will take place this year on Wednesday, June 4th.
Angels of all disciplines are encouraged to attend and participate.
Previously experienced Angels (and you know who you are!) are
especially encouraged to come and share  the camaraderie and sense
of fulfillment that is enjoyed during this most unusual of AIC's
outreach  events.

To volunteer for this year's event, or for
further information, please contact

    Michele Pagan
    202-546-5439
    michele_johnpagan [at] yahoo__com


                                  ***
                  Conservation DistList Instance 16:54
                 Distributed: Thursday, March 27, 2003
                       Message Id: cdl-16-54-006
                                  ***
Received on Wednesday, 26 March, 2003

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