Handing an ancient document can easily induce damage into a document that is irreplaceable. Even simply sneezing on a priceless document can induce damage. One archivist recently told of an experience of a friend of hers who had once sneezed on an illuminated manuscript. As the friend instinctively began wiping, the ink smudged. The more they wiped, the worse it got; the scene was practically the same nightmare that had been depicted on the old British TV show Mr. Bean.
What needs to be done to preserve historic old documents.? An article by Olivia Campbell and published in The Atlantic discusses the need to be extra cautious when handling historic documents. You can find the article at: https://bit.ly/3hBnRVS.
My thanks to newsletter reader David Brown for telling me about this article.