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Scrapbooks and Albums

Please see our video on photographs for information on the care and handling of scrapbooks and albums.

Display and Storage

  • Shelve small and medium-sized scrapbooks and albums upright. If they are large, bulge open, or contain loose items, display or store them flat.
  • If a scrapbook’s cover is loose, tie the book closed with linen or cotton tape.
  • If individual items are loose or a scrapbook is damaged, store it in an acid-free box or wrap it in acid-free paper.

Care

  • News clippings and other yellowed papers are highly acidic and may harm items on nearby pages. If you can safely remove these clippings from a scrapbook, photocopy them onto acid-free paper, put the copies in the book, and save the originals separately if they have handwritten information.
  • If you can not remove acidic materials such as news clippings from a scrapbook, separate them from other items with sheets of acid-free paper or polyester film.
  • Use only stable plastic or acid-free paper corners to reattach loose items. For all other repairs, seek professional advice.

Making a New Scrapbook or Album

  • Select safe materials such as acid-free binders, pages, and paper corners and stable plastics for sleeves, pocket pages and stamp mounts.
  • Photocopy newspaper clippings onto acid-free paper.
  • Cutting original photographs or other heirlooms into decorative shapes diminishes their value. Preserve the original and make a copy to cut up.