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Curation and Preservation Services: Mold

CPS - Contents

Moldy Library Materials

Mold and mildew are general terms for a wide range of fungi which are present everywhere. When conditions are right – warm and humid (over 65% RH) – spores germinate and produce enzymes that can digest organic materials such a paper, book cloth and even media. Mold also poses a health risk depending upon an individual’s sensitivity. It is important to isolate the moldy item and deal with the source of the problem immediately.


If the materials are the property of the MIT Libraries, follow the directions in the Wet Book Kit.

If the moldy item was found in the stacks or newly-received material (new or gifts) please contact Curation and Preservation Services immediately at 617-253-5282. Mold can be a sign of more serious environmental problems.

If the books and papers do not belong to the Libraries, refer the individual to Disaster Response for Personal Collections. MIT Curation and Preservation Services staff will provide advice to MIT employees and affiliates whose personal collections have been damaged. Call 617-253-5282 or send an email message to during working hours (M-F, 8:30-5:00)