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Preservation Week at MIT Libraries - information and events.

About Preservation Week

The American Library Association organized the first Preservation Week in 2010 to highlight the importance of preserving cultural heritage materials. 

During Preservation Week libraries all over the country present events, activities, and resources that show what we can do, individually and together, to preserve our personal and shared collections.

MIT Libraries has been participating in Preservation Week since its first year in 2010, and we are delighted to offer a variety of new events each year!

Learn about previous Preservation Week activities hosted by MIT Libraries.

Preservation Week 2014

During National Preservation Week (April 28-May 2), MIT Libraries sponsored the following events to celebrate the preservation of cultural heritage. If you were unable to attend any of the events, most of them were recorded and are available to watch online.

Tuesday, April 29

Approximately 200 participants attended six events organized by Curation and Preservation Services to kick off our Preservation Week celebration.

100 participants from the MIT and Cambridge communities attended the four talks presented in the Stata Center Room 32-144. The first talk, a 45 minute brown bag lecture, "Our Marathon: The Boston Bombing Digital Archive” by Jim McGrath, explained how the digital archive, a community project hosted by Northeastern University, crowdsources and provides a way to collect, preserve, and archive all stories related to the events surrounding the 2013 Boston Marathon bombings. 

Immediately following was The Art and Science of Document Security: Past, Present, and Future. This series of talks presented research on historical, contemporary, and novel methods for creating secure documents in all forms. Thanks to AMPS for recording the talks and to for making them available online at the following URLS:

Immediately following the talks, 10 attendees enjoyed a 45 minute tour of the current exhibit Thanks for the Memory: 50+ Years of Computing at MIT, in 14N-130. Many thanks to Nora Murphy, Archivist for Reference, Outreach, and Instruction, MIT Institute Archives and Special Collections, for leading the tour in Maihaugen Gallery. The exhibit will be up until July 25.

The night ended with a free screening of The Monuments Men in 26-100, co-sponsored by SONY Pictures and the MIT Lecture Series Committee. Thank you also to the Monuments Men Foundation. Over 100 MIT and Harvard community members came out to enjoy a free screening of The Monuments Men. George Clooney plays George Stout, a local art conservation hero who saved cultural heritage from ruin during WWII. The film is based on the book The Monuments Men: Allied Heroes, Nazi Thieves and the Greatest Treasure Hunt in History by Robert M. Edsel. One lucky MIT student won a signed copy of the Edsel’s book at the movie screening. The movie will be available on Blu-ray and DVD May 20th.

Wednesday, April 30th

Our Marathon: Boston Bombing Digital Archive & WBUR Oral History Project held a "Share Your Story" event. Our Marathon is a crowd-sourced community project hosted by Northeastern University that was the subject of the brown bag lecture on Tuesday. The Our Marathon team held many such "Share Your Story" events during April. Sixty members of the MIT community stopped by the Our Marathon table in Lobby 10 or went to the Bush Room to share their memories by uploading material through a web form or recording an interview with an oral historian.The project is still collecting stories, so if you missed the event, you can contribute text, photo, video, or audio at Contributions can be restricted so that they are not publicly available through the website but are available to researchers who register through NEU.

Thursday, May 1st

To conclude Preservation Week, Curation and Preservation Services screened a webinar, "Preserving Scrapbooks." The webinar was hosted by the Association for Library and Technical Services, a division of the American Library Association, as a national Preservation Week offering. Melissa Tedone, Conservator for the Parks Library Preservation Department at Iowa State University, discussed older scrapbooks and how to choose the most stable materials for new scrapbooks. The webinar featured an interactive section in which the audience was polled about how they would chose to treat certain scrapbooks. The recording of the webinar, as well as the slides and handout, is available at

Preservation Week Resources