Procedures for Cleaning and Housing Glass Lantern Slides
The slides were cleaned twice—before and after scanning—using Rexton Anti-static Film Cleaner and Premier Professional Photowipes. The first cleaning removed long built-up dirt and grime, making the slides suitable for scanning. The second cleaning eliminated any fingerprints, smudges or dust picked up during the scanning process.
- Wear cotton gloves while handling and cleaning slides.
- Set up a padded work area. We purchased a yard or so of low-pile/low-lint fleece and folded it once to make a forgiving staging area for cleaning. It allows the cleaner to safely set out a few slides at a time, and protects a slide if accidentally dropped.
- Wet a small area of a photowipe with anti-static, lint-free film cleaner. Clean both sides of the slide with a gentle circular motion. Avoid damaging the paper border holding the two glass panes together or descriptive labels affixed to the slide. The cleaner evaporates quickly.
- Place the slide in an archival four-flap lantern slide envelope (acid-free, lignin-free, unbuffered). If the slide is broken or if one of the glass panes is missing, consider encapsulating it with polyester film or placing it in a comparable enclosure to protect it doubly.
- Place enveloped slides in archival lantern slide boxes with 4-ply Westminster Rag Board tabbed index dividers every five slides. We used acid-free, lignin-free 4 1/2H x 4 1/2W x 10 1/2"D, boxes made from 40-point tan unbuffered barrier board. They can house about 50 slides per box (including dividers) and have deep lids.
- We labeled every box, divider and slide envelope with acid-free foil-back labels. Individual slide labels showed call number, collection name, library name, slide number and slide title. Divider labels showed the numbers of the five slides after the divider. Box labels showed call number, collection name and date range, box number, and slide numbers contained therein.