Treasured objects and artifacts held by the Eli M. Oboler Library at Idaho State University will be preserved for future generations with help from the IMLS Connecting to Collections Bookshelf, a core set of conservation books and online resources donated by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).
IMLS has now awarded almost 3,000 free sets of the IMLS Bookshelf, in cooperation with the American Association for State and Local History (AASLH).
“As the collections held by the Oboler Library continue to grow and include new formats, we must be able to keep up with their proper care to ensure their safe preservation,” stressed Karen Kearns, head of Special Collections. “Items such as the operatic recordings in the Amelita Galli-Curci Collection and the Hollywood costume drawings in the Edward Stevenson Collection require very special handling and the materials included in the Bookshelf will help that happen.”
“When IMLS launched this initiative to improve the dire state of our nation’s collections, we understood that the materials gathered for the Bookshelf would serve as important tools for museums, libraries, and archives nationwide,” said Anne-Imelda Radice, Director of IMLS. “We were both pleased and encouraged by the overwhelming interest of institutions prepared to answer the call to action, and we know that with their dedication, artifacts from our shared history will be preserved for future generations.”
The Oboler Library will receive this essential set of resources based on an application describing the needs and plans for the care of its collections. The IMLS Bookshelf focuses on collections typically found in art or history museums and in libraries’ special collections, with an added selection of texts for zoos, aquariums, public gardens, and nature centers. It addresses such topics as the philosophy and ethics of collecting, collections management and planning, emergency preparedness, and culturally specific conservation issues.
The IMLS Bookshelf is a crucial component of “Connecting to Collections: A Call to Action,” a conservation initiative that the Institute launched in 2006. IMLS began the initiative in response to a 2005 study it released in partnership with Heritage Preservation, “A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Health Index Report on the State of America’s Collections.” The multi-faceted, multi-year initiative shines a nationwide spotlight on the needs of America’s collections, especially those held by smaller institutions, which often lack the human and financial resources necessary to adequately care for their collections. More information on the Connecting to Collections initiative is available on the IMLS website at http://www.imls.gov/collections/index.htm.
About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute’s mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit www.imls.gov.
This item was contributed by Karen Kearns, Head of Special Collections.