SEES Preservation Committee
June 27, 1998, 2:00-4:00 pm
Present: Nina Palmin (Library of Congress), Brad Schaffner (U of
Kansas), Grazyna Slanda (Harvard U), Jared Ingersoll-Casey (Ohio State U),
Richard Fitzsimmons, Secretary (Penn State)
There were eighteen (18) persons in attendance.
Nina Palmin, chair, convened the meeting at 2:15PM. An agenda was
Nina Palmin read the Committee's charge. The Minutes of the 1998
Mid-Winter meeting (New Orleans) were unanimously approved upon the motion
of Brad Schaffner, seconded by Grazyna Slanda.
It was noted that new committee members are welcome, volunteering was
encouraged and that Brad Schaffner will follow-up with appropriate ALA
The day's program consisted of two reports. Brad Schaffner presented
findings and distributed a draft report on "The Results from
the Preservation Condition Survey of the University of Kansas Libraries'
Slavic Collections." It was mentioned that the study was an outgrowth
on the study of Kansas' general collection (College and Research
Libraries, vol. 58, no. 2 (March 1997): 115-126). Brad reported that it
was the first study in the U.S. on Slavic materials. He reported on the
procedure employed. Kansas did study as an aid to guide the Libraries in
spending preservation monies, including proportion of funds to be
allocated to deacidification. Findings were: paper is not that brittle,
despite amount of acid paper used; that strong bindings protect acid stock
from brittleness; that the Libraries' environmental conditions are related
to holdings' physical conditions; and that Polish and Russian publishers
are increasing publishing on acid-free stock.
The second part of the program was a report by Galina Kislovskaya,
Deputy Director General of the Library for Foreign Literature, Moscow,
Galina commented on her publication, "Preservation Challenges in a
Changing Political Climate," published jointly in 1996 by The
Commission on Preservation and Access (Washington) and The European
Commission on Preservation and Access (ISBN 90:6984-167-3). This
publication updated an earlier Commission report.
Galina announced that the Russian Minister of Culture approved a
national preservation program in May 1998. This program was approved by
officials from major Russian libraries. This is a ten-year program and
global in scope. It has seven (7) components: Usage, Book Monuments,
Security, Staff training, Inventory, Reformatting, and Conservation. It
was noted that the environmental situation in Russia is
"catastrophic." Library preservation is seen by many as a
"cinderella" issue, but persons' consciousness has been raised.
Security issues are being addressed in preservation-related
Archive collections in Russian libraries have been microfilmed. Russian
standards are similar to United States standards; both are a reflection of
International Federation of Library Association (IFLA) standards. Master
negatives of books are stored in old military vaults. It is a long battle
to get proper space.
"Displaced" collections are emerging as a political issue.
Recently an historical Hungarian collection - 1,042 volumes of Calvinistic
materials - was discovered. Upon hearing this, Grazyna Slanda questioned,
"will 'displaced' Polish collections be returned to Poland?"
Galina said while it is the law to return collections, "it probably
won't happen." It was noted that via the Internet, collections are
being made available.
Alan Pollard noted SEMP microfilming of Russian newspapers,
The meeting adjourned on unanimous consent at 3:30 p.m.
--Minutes submitted by Richard Fitzsimmons.
Last updated 01/06/99