The Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) will co-host a daylong program to help Birmingham-area residents identify and preserve items of historical and cultural significance. Presented in collaboration with the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute, the event will feature presentations, hands-
on activities and preservation tips.
Participants may bring up to three personal items for a 20-minute, one-on-one professional consultation with experts on how to care for them. The specialists will serve as reviewers, not appraisers, and will be unable to determine an item’s monetary value. Objects such as books, paper and textiles no larger than a shopping bag can be reviewed (furniture, carpets, firearms and paintings are excluded). Home video is also encouraged in 8mm, super 8, and 16mm film. We are unable to accommodate video formats such as VHS or HI-8.
The Treasures program also includes the following activities:
11:00 AM Saving Your Family Photographs and Papers
Great Aunt Mary left you with the responsibility of preserving the family photographs and papers – now what do you do? Learn how light, heat, and humidity can affect your family collections. Discover some simple things you can do to preserve your family paper and photography collections.
Presenter: Dee Psaila, Senior Conservator, Archives of Ontario
12:00 PM Preserving Digital Memories
Digital photos and other new media are fragile and require special care to keep them useable. As new technologies appear for creating and saving our personal digital information, older ones become obsolete, making it difficult to access older content. Join us to learn some simple, practical tips for preserving your digital memories.
Presenter: Walter Forsberg, Digital Archivist, Smithsonian NMAAHC
1:00 PM Preserving Clothing and Textiles
What is a “textile” in the museum world? Rag dolls, flags/banners, hats, lace, linens, needlework, quilts/ blankets, uniforms, upholstery/curtains – think fabric. Come and learn some tips on how to better preserve your daughter’s christening gown, your grandmother’s wedding dress, or your father’s military uniform from a professional who works in the field of textile preservation.
Presenter: Renée Anderson, Head of Collections, Smithsonian NMAAHC
2:00 PM Preserving Church Records: What to do and What not to do.
Every congregation should be keeping a record of its church history to develop a more complete understanding of its past activities. Learn best practices in preserving local church history, including what historical material to acquire and how to inventory and store.
Presenter: Frazine Taylor, Independent Archivist and Genealogy Consultant
12:30 PM and 2:30 PM Textile Packing Demonstration
Learn to store your textiles like a museum professional! Get practical tips to help you preserve special quilts and clothing, such as family uniforms and wedding dresses. See demonstrations of how to pack a quilt or dress using archival materials so you can safely store your treasures for the next generation.
Presenter: Susan Neill, Independent Costume & Textiles Scholar and Museum Consultant
For more information, visit www.nmaahc.si.edu/programs/treasures, email firstname.lastname@example.org or call (877) 733-9599.