How to store Rare Religious Books

by Admin on August 24, 2011 · Book Care and Conservation, Rare Religious Books

Rare religious books have high value not only in a monetary sense, but in a sentimental way as well. Their sentimental value increases even more if they have come from the holy land, or perhaps the country of the family’s ancestors.

In our rare religious books article, the value of several rare books that were sold over the past years were listed in a table form. However it should be noted that rare religious books can also be priceless due to what they mean to you and anyone else in your family.  It is therefore imperative and important to store these books properly and safely so that they retain their value and are able to be read by many others in years to come.

Below you will find instructions on how to store and keep rare religious books, but the instructions may very well apply to any  other kind of rare book as well.

  1. Room Selection:Select a room that you will keep your precious rare religious books in. The selection of the room should be made with temperature, humidity and the path of direct sunlight in mind.
    1. Temperature: the temperature of the room should be preferably kept at room temperature, and should be constant. A cool temperature of about 60-65 degrees Fahrenheit is most desirable.
    2. Humidity: The humidity should be constant as well, and should be kept around 40-60 percent, which is ideal for book preservation.
    3. Direct sunlight: Old and rare books should not be exposed to direct sunlight. Direct sunlight can not only increase the acidity of the pages, but also turn them yellow, and greatly bleach the book’s cover.
  2.  Bookshelf Selection: The selection of the bookshelf is also very important.  The bookshelf being used should be made preferably of metal with an enamel finish. This is much better than a wooden bookshelf, as the chemicals in the wood may damage/harm the sensitive and old rare religious books. If the use of wooden bookshelves cannot be avoided however, then extra care should be taken to seal the shelves, thus preventing the transfer of acidity from the wood to the books.
  3. Book Position: The correct rare book position is the upright position on the self. The books should be supported by each other on either side and for books at the end, you may use bookends of a similar size for support. If the rare religious book is of a particular large size, you may also lay it horizontally on the self. This horizontal positioning is particularly important for books which are taller than 18 inches.
  4. Dust: The rare and old religious books should be absolutely dust free. Dust is the growing ground of mold, so rare books should be dusted frequently and carefuly, using a small and gentle brush.
  5. Cleanliness: It is obviously very important for the book to be clean. The room should be regularly cleaned to reduce the risk of having rodents and insects in the room. Rodents and insects harm books and may eat or chew the book, or even worse, may lay their eggs or leave their debris in between the books on the shelf.

These simple instructions should be sufficient to maintain your priceless religious rare books in perfect condition so that they may be enjoyed by youand the generations to come. They will also enable you to present the books in a better shape for re-sale.

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