THE FRAKTUR: ITS HISTORY AND A CONSERVATION CASE STUDY
. Ammonia most likely acts to dissociate the molecules of starch-based adhesives. The mild reaction increases the swelling and viscosity of the adhesive, thus making it easier to remove. Higher pH levels of the ammonia will increase the activity. In this respect, pH appears to be a determining factor in the partial depolymerization of the adhesive. The effect is similar to that of sodium tetraborate, which is used in the manufacture of certain starch-related adhesives to help increase swelling and viscosity. These adhesives have specific applications in the paper products industry.
. Ethanol is highly soluble in water. This is due to the hydrogen bonds that are formed when the two molecules are mixed. Increasing the concentration of ethanol in the solution will protect water-sensitive pigments during the washing operation of an object.
. Marion Dirda, a former Library of Congress senior paper conservator, introduced the technique to the author in the late 1970s and early 1980s.
. Since the object's expansion was limited by the use of ethanol and water solution for humidification, it was important that the blotter be humidified in a similar manner. For instance, humidifying the blotter with only water might have allowed more moisture than desirable to be absorbed into the object on contact with the blotter. Such additional moisture in the support might affect water-soluble pigment and cause the support to expand. Not humidifying the blotter at all or humidifying it too little would have caused it to cockle immediately upon contact with the object by drawing moisture from the object. The cockled blotter would have quickly formed tight creases once the vacuum pressure from the table was increased, thereby creasing the object as well.
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SOURCES OF MATERIALSAcrylic resins, spun-bonded polyester fabrics
Conservation Materials 1165 Marietta Way, Sparks, Nev. 89431Blotter paper
Paper Technologies, 929 Calle Negocio, Unit D, San Clemente, Calif. 92673Gore-Tex barrier laminate
W. L. Gore and Associates, Inc., P.O. Box 1550, Elkton, Md. 21922–1550Japanese paper, kizukishi
BookMakers, 6000 66th Ave., Suite 101, Riverdale, Md. 20737Japanese paper, usui-usu-minogami, tengujo
Hiromi Paper International, 4223 Glencoe Ave. #C–107, Marina del Rey, Calif. 90292Leafcasting Equipment
Museum Services Corporation, 1107 East Cliff Rd., Burnsville, Minn. 55337Methyl cellulose
Dow Chemical Company, Midland, Mich. 48674Polyester film
Light Impressions, 439 Monroe Ave., Rochester, N.Y. 14607Wheat paste
Talas, 213 West 35th St., New York, N.Y. 10001
TED STANLEY is in charge of special collections conservation in the Rare Book and Special Collection Department of the Firestone Library as well as other special libraries at Princeton University. Before arriving at Princeton University, he was a senior paper conservator at the Library of Congress, where he was a staff member from 1976 to 1992. From 1984 to 1985, through the National Endowment for the Arts Fellowships for Museum Professionals Program, he worked on the conservation staffs of the Bibliothèque Nationale in Paris, France and the Centro Nationale de Conservacion y Restauracion de Bienes Culturales in Madrid, Spain, studying paper conservation. Address: Preservation Office, Firestone Library, Princeton University, One Washington Rd., Princeton, N.J. 08544.