UM Library Gets Grant to Improve Archive Humidity
Rare books and photographs will be among the collections that will benefit from a $20,000 grant to control the air in the University of Montana Library archives. According to a recent news release from Donna McCrea, head of the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library archives, the relative humidity in the building is not as stable as they'd like it, though the temperature control is in good shape. The grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities will allow experts to assess the library building and come up with an improvement plan. McCrea said that forest fire smoke has also been a concern in past years.
McCrea said the articles of most concern include unpublished diaries, letters, photographs and recorded oral histories of people in Montana. "Archives and Special Collections materials are used on and off campus for personal and professional research and scholarship... We want to ensure that all our special collections are available for research and into the future." The grant is from the Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections program to assist the challenge of preserving large and diverse holdiings throughout the U.S.