Senior Conservator, Special Collections
The General Collections Care unit is part of the Barbara Goldsmith Preservation & Conservation Department.
We maintain the physical integrity of our general library collections using standards-informed practices.
This work includes binding newly purchased volumes and rebinding volumes damaged during use. The binding of monographs is handled exclusively by the department’s Preservation Assistant, while the binding of journals is handled by our colleagues in the Serials & Payments Unit within KARMS’ Resource Management.
General Collections Book Repair
Recently circulated damaged books that are too fragile for the commercial machine binding process and books requested for interlibrary loan are repaired in-house. The treatments follow standardized methods and materials to ensure long-term durability.
Reformatting, through preservation photocopying or digitization, replaces a volume with a facsimile created according to established preservation standards. This activity is an option when a frequently used book has deteriorated (brittle) paper and is unavailable in another format.
Books with unique characteristics, such as intentionally loose elements or textured binding, are stored in custom-made boxes to protect these elements. All boxes and enclosures are custom sized and constructed from preservation-quality materials.
Education and Outreach
The conservators create training resources for library staff who work with general collections material to promote the preservation of the collection. Many student employees in the general collection care unit pursue higher education in conservation or the aligned field of library science and museum studies.