Alina Josan

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The conservation team continues to document and treat the ledgers in the Bank of North America collection. The nature of our work requires careful examination of the books' physical structure, which will affect the individual treatment to be carried out. This presented us with a great opportunity to compare many binding styles and glean insights into Philadelphia's stationery trade. We've photographed the over 670 ledgers in the collection and have found that the bank made use of the services of at least a dozen different stationers over the years.


A 1776 draft for the Articles of Confederation in John Dickinson's hand resides at the Historical Society of Pennsylvania, and it was recently conserved during a project funded by Bank of America.


While treating volumes from the William Curtis Bok and Nellie Lee Holt Bok papers (1836-1991) I often encountered objects pressed inside. The book below, History of Holt and Atchinson Counties, Missouri (vol. 26), seen after conservation treatment, is an example of the family's treasured books.  The leaf of an American elm, a ribbon with graphite scribblings, and a party souvenir printed on fabric were among the items stored inside the books.

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The project conservation team has been busy photographing each of the hundreds of volumes in the Bank of North America collection. In the process we have created a sizeable collection of decorated papers present in these volumes, either as endsheets or exterior covering. Most of these were created using a process known as marbling, although some books contain paste papers as well.

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