The Preservation Handbook Online

Table of Contents

I. Preservation
II. Assessment
III. Collection Assessment
IV. Agents of Deterioration
V. Monitoring collections
VI. Materials
VII. Storage
VIII. Conservation
IX. Disaster Planning
X. Housekeeping
XI. Resources / Suppliers
XII. Preservation Grants

About this site

This website was created to provide information professionals, archivists, and people working with cultural materials quick access to preservation and conservation resources. Time is money and uninformed decisions are expensive. Our mission is to help the caretakers of history extend the life of their unique collections.


Provide current resources
Promote preservation awareness
Increase professional networks
Promote familiarity with conservation

Website citation:

Moe, T. (2002) (applicable section) The online preservation handbook. Littleton, CO.

Style Guide:

The Online Preservation Handbook was designed with the economy of user, time and ease of reading in mind. Elements needed to provide a complete picture as it pertains to each topic are located on that page.
-The top navigation bar is uniform throughout the site. From the top bar you can access: information about the site: purpose, citation, and style guide; the literature review; search mechanism and the home button.
-The left box contains the table of contents and is uniform throughout the site. From here, you can access every major topic area. This allows the user to either move through the site linearly, or browse areas of interests.
-The center section is reserved for the body of the material. When applicable, a second navigation bar has been integrated into the center sections that provide links to related topics. On long scrolling pages topics are anchored into a navigation bar within the text.
-The right box contains term definitions from the body of the text that might be unfamiliar to the reader. Words that are defined are off-set throughthe use of color. This will assist the user by not having to leave the page where the word appears. If there aren't any terms to define, the right box element was not included in the page.
-The bottom box is the reference area where citations from outside sources can be found.

The site style is meant to be simple and visually interesting while making the most use of the screen space. Borders and background colors were used to help define each area on the page. I decided to remove the border from the center section of the index page for simple aesthetics. The colors chosen were of no significance just visually pleasing. The pentagram was chosen for its simplicity and symbolic meaning. The number '5' has always been regarded as mystical and magical, yet essentially 'human'. We have five fingers/toes on each limb extremity.We commonly note five senses - sight, hearing, smell, touch and taste. We perceive five stages or initiations in our lives - eg. birth, adolescence, coitus, parenthood and death. It signifies severity, conflict and harmony through conflict. The Golden Proportion is one beloved of artists since Renaissance times and also to be found in post-Hellenic art and in the geometric planning of Templar sites, being those proportions of a rectangle considered most pleasing to the eye. It also is the number that corresponds to the 5 steps of preservation.

The pages were split into 5 containers. Each section was set with definite width limitations to prevent an issue I had with the center box area under-lapping the right side floater. Using this layout makes this site printer unfriendly. The hyper-textual nature of the document lends itself to electronic format more so than printed.

For design consistency, only three headings are used. Heading one is the largest and indicates the prominent overall subject of the site as a preservation and conservation handbook. Heading two was used as the title for each topic and page division. Heading three was used for sub-categories or related categories within each topic. The paragraph tag was defined to 15 px. so that the text is easy to read. Verdana was chosen because it maintains its clarity even when very small. The scaling of text creates a visual relationship on the page. Bold elements act as a visual signpost for the commencement of one topic and the beginning of another. Link colors were defined in line as opposed to the external CSS according to xhtml rules. This also ensures that browsers without CSS support will still maintain the assigned color attributes. This is particularly important in the top navigation bar where default links would be lost. I also found I was unable to get the heading sub-classes (eg. p.head element in the CSS) to work properly so I used the h tags inline within the p tag to achieve the effect I was looking for. Citation numbers are defined with both emphasis and the color red in order to subtly distinguish outside sources from original content without cluttering the page. Div tags were used to apply a uniform style in each section. The nav bar class was created to centrally position the links. Outside links are presented using the URL as opposed to text for easy documentation. The one anomaly is the "Blue wool standards" on the monitoring collections page where the URL length poses a problem within the definition area.

Two cascading style sheets are in use. One is used for the index page and one for the remainder of the site because of the graphic included in the center section of the index page.

The assessment basic and storage section utilize tables to present the content in order to organize and separate the information effectively.

Downloadable documents are in .pdf format in order to maintain document structure.