Unshelved by Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum
comic strip overdue media

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

Checking links for my second job

I discovered the New Orleans Museum of Art's temporary website and the location of the staff. I can't imagine the process that will be necessary to get the museum up and running. Unfortunately, many museums, libraries, and archives are in similar situations. I only hope that much of the history and culture of the region can be saved.

When you study library preservation they always talk of the 48-hour window you have when things get wet before mould invades. That's when it's imperative to have plans in place to freeze items for recovery later or dry minimally damaged items with fans. There's always the assumption that somewhere in the 48 hours you had a chance to get some climate control, whether it's dehumidifiers and fans or air conditioning.

Nothing prepares you for having a collection submerged in sewage for nearly a month, or having your staff told to evacuate for public safety so that they must either comply or violate direct orders of authorities. No disaster plan was ready for the scope of Katrina's wake. But all over the region, there are those trying to save what they can. Good luck to them, and to those institutions and organisations trying to help.

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