Suzette Schmidt


Anyone reading this have a “green thumb?” Good for you!   I will be the first to admit that I do not possess gardening skills in any way, shape or form.  However, I am becoming more skilled at the “weeding out” of unbound print issues located in both the Periodical Room and the General Collection.

Now, you may think weeding means discarding (and sometimes it does – more on this later) but for me, in this instance, this is an in-depth, thorough examination of the issues held in these locations on a semiannual basis. The items pulled are ones that are often ready to be bound midyear or have been previously missed or overlooked. Doing this sweep twice a year also alerts me to seek further investigation into periodicals which may be missing, not yet received, or possibly ceased publication. I of course do regular “trimming” of these unbound journal items on a daily basis by using my “weed eater” skills (ie. previously predicted frequency patterns for pulling serials to either be bound or discarded).

I would love to hear how often you do a sweep of your collection and any tips you have on keeping your collection nicely manicured.

img_1107

 

While preparing serials to either be shelved or prepared for binding, I often discover or receive damaged issues from other Library employees.  These damaged issues are either repaired by our Conservation Lab staff or, if damage is deemed beyond repair, a request for a replacement issue is placed with our Serials Acquisitions unit.

There are three common types of journal repairs which can be performed in our Library Conservation Lab: fill, mend and sew.

A fill done when there is a hole or chunk missing from the issue and an alternate piece of paper is used to fill it in.

fill2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

IMG_5735

IMG_5737

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A mend repair occurs when there is a rip or tear in the issue, but it is small and generally fixed with repair tape.

journalrepair5journalrepair



 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A sew repair happens when the cover or other pages are coming apart from the journal – a needle and thread is used or sometimes glue instead to alleviate this problem, so the issue can remain intact and be ready for use. 

Written by Suzette Schmidt.

The Iowa State University Library’s Preservation Services unit is responsible for gathering, organizing, and preparing three newspaper publications to be shipped out of the Library to a microfilming company in order to be filmed and permanently added to our collection.  This allows people to research these publications starting from 1890 (in the case of the Iowa State Daily) to the present.  The biggest problem we have had in completing this task is making sure we had a copy of each issue published.  We solved this problem and no longer need to worry about having the copies we need.

Newspapers

  • Iowa Farm Bureau Spokesman is a weekly publication of Iowa Farm Bureau providing important information regarding agriculture from all parts of the state.   We had been using the copy which we receive on subscription, but were finding that often issues were missing.  We would then need to borrow the publisher’s copy.  To avoid this problem, the publisher now sends us a copy to use only for microfilming.
  • Toons is a free weekly publication of Cartoons and Puzzles that is enjoyed by many from Iowa State, Ames, and the surrounding communities.  Once again, we were having problems with the papers disappearing from our shelves.  Toons is placed around campus and the community with one of these locations at the building next to the library.  One of our staff members picks up a copy each week which we use as the copy for microfilming.
  • Iowa State Daily is the daily student newspaper of Iowa State University providing information to students, faculty, staff, and community members about events and other subjects of interest in regards to this academic institution.   The library obtains 2 copies of the Daily.  One copy is mailed to us and a second copy is picked up by a staff member in Special Collections.  Having 2 copies available allows us to pick the cleanest copy to send to our vendor for filming.

Written by Suzette Schmidt of Preservation Services.

I have always been a person who enjoys a mystery, whether reading a book or problem-solving through tasks.  My love of reading began at age 5.   My mother was an elementary school teacher, and she decided it was important for me to learn how to read before starting school.  She taught me how to read prior to entering kindergarten which I am extremely grateful for.  I absolutely loved to read (still do) and I became a voracious reader.  My favorite place to visit growing up was the public library.  I had no clue then that I would eventually be working in a library as an adult, however.  This came as a surprise to me, but it felt right.

Mystery-01

As a second-grader, I began reading Nancy Drew mysteries, which I loved as a kid.  I am now using Suduko and Crossword puzzles outside of work to take the place of mystery novels.  However, I get to fill this “problem-solving” need at work, as well, which I find enjoyable.  There are some aspects to my job where I am in a continual search for serial issues which either appear to be misplaced or missing as well as items which seem to “magically appear” as a surprise or a gift that I had not previously been looking for.

Mystery-02

When I am presented with these journal issues, I happily get out my “sleuthing skills” to figure out the next steps that needed to be taken either to claim for any missing materials, or to bind those that have been found during this process.  It gives me a tangible sense of accomplishment when I am able to resolve each “mystery” which comes my way.

Mystery-03

 

Written by Suzette Schmidt, Preservation Services

At Iowa State University Library, the process of transferring serial titles from the General Collection (Stacks) to the Periodical Room follows a certain protocol which requires interdepartmental collaboration.

IMG_4547

First, an upper-level Library employee in the Collections & Technical Services Division authorizes the transfer of the individual serial title from the General Collection into the Periodical Room.   Transfers are made for two reasons: 1) to make these issues more easily accessible to patrons; 2) to free up needed shelf space in Stacks.

This authorization then goes to another Library employee in Serials Acquisitions who updates the physical call number label and the serial’s check-in records online.

IMG_4546

The next step is performed by an employee in Serials Cataloging who retrieves the journals from the General Collection, completes a Serials Change Form, and then changes the location from “Gen” to “Per” online before giving the issues and a photocopy of the form to the Library Assistant in Preservation Services.

IMG_4552

The Library Assistant in Preservation Services will search each title online to determine if it is also held electronically or on microfilm.  Then, a new shelf label (with the call number and title) for the serial will be created for the Periodical Room.

IMG_4558

When the shelf label is completed, someone from Preservation Services will then install the label and new serial in the Periodical Room in call number order.  There may be a need to shift the journals already located in the Periodical Room to allow room for the incoming ones, so that step is done whenever dictated by space limitations.   If a significant amount of shifting is required, then Preservation Services will call on Stacks Management to assist them in that endeavor.

Written by Suzette Schmidt.

One of ways that the Preservation Department is proactively preserving the printed monograph collection is by sending certain items to be commercially “deacidified.”   Books are tested to see whether they qualify for this process by using an Abbey pH pen.    You make a dot with this pen at the top of the material, and then examine the color of the dot.

Purple =  not acidic.

Yellow = acidic.

If the book meets this criteria for being acidic, then the Library Assistant goes into Aleph (our online catalog) to change the availability status in the holding record.   Afterward, it is placed with other monographs waiting to be shipped in the next deacidification shipment.

When the materials are being prepared to be shipped, the books are placed in gray bins with the spine facing downward and are then covered with styrofoam packing to keep them protected.   After the bin has been loaded, the Library Assistant or Student Assistant will set it on the scale to determine its weight.

The shipment is usually returned to the Library by the commercial vendor within 3-4 weeks.    The Library Assistant then unpacks the gray bins, changes the holdings status to reflect that these books are now available, and then takes them to the Circulation Desk for that department’s check-in process on the materials.