Preservation Services Across Campus: Baker Library

A woman working in a conservation lab.
Lisa treating a book in the conservation lab. 

This series of blog posts highlights the different spaces across the Harvard campus where Preservation Services staff work to preserve and conserve library materials. 

A conservation lab was established at Harvard Business School’s Baker Library in 2005. It is currently staffed by Lisa Clark, conservation technician, and Deb Cuoco, conservator. Between them, they address the preservation needs of the library: everything from treatment of special and contemporary collections, preservation review of items requested in the special collections reading room, exhibition and loan prep, surveys, and digitization prep. They also manage environmental monitoring, pest management, and emergency planning and response. They work closely with the main lab at the Weissman Preservation Center. Most rewarding are the collaborations with colleagues at Baker Library— collections managers, processing archivists, and public services—to ensure that the collections are available and safe to use by researchers. 

  A woman taking a reading from a environmental monitor in an exhibit case.  A woman taking a reading from a environmental monitor in an exhibit case.
Deb downloads temperature and humidity data from an exhibition case. Maintaining stable levels helps to prolong the life of the rare materials in Baker’s business history collections. 

A woman reviewing a paper document.  A woman reviewing a book.
Deb and Lisa review items in the de Gaspé Beaubien Reading Room. If they can spot fragile items at risk for damage early on, they can treat them before unique information is lost. 

  A woman making a cradle out of mat board for a book.
Lisa prepares materials for exhibition: a mat board cradle for a book.


See also: Conservation