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Culture / Newsy

How To Save Your Priceless Photos From Hurricane Flood Damage

Keeping Memories Alive

BY // 09.01.17

Sofas and chairs can be replaced, homes rebuilt. But some of the greatest losses in hurricane and tropical storm disasters come in the form of memories preserved by photographs. Don’t throw them out. They can be saved.

The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston senior curator for decorative arts Steven Pine recommends this website for step by step instructions from the National Park Service’s National Center for Preservation Technology and Training (NCPTT). Below you will find the steps for salvaging photographs:

1). Remove from plastic/paper enclosures or frames. Save all information about the photos.

2). Carefully rinse with cool, clean water as necessary.

3). Do not touch or blot surfaces.

4). Air dry: Hang with clips attached on non-image areas or lay flat on absorbent paper. Keep photographs from contact with adjacent surfaces or each other.

5). If there are too many for immediate attention, either: Keep photos (except historic photos) in a container of clean water for no more than 48 hours. Air dry or Freeze. If possible, interleave each photo with freezer or waxed paper.

6). Do not freeze glass plate negatives.

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