Preserving Newspaper Clippings
7/23/2014
Preserve those old, yellowed newspaper clippings and organize them into your own family news file.
Does your family archive hold yellowed and crumbling news clippings from years gone by? If so, you have a lot more than an old newspaper in your hands. You own a piece of history that’s becoming more rare each day. But unfortunately, that same clipping is a toxic time bomb that can damage anything it touches, turning artifacts into archival junk in just a few short years.
 
It’s the very nature of newspapers to be short-lived: Yesterday’s headlines are constantly being replaced by today’s breaking news. Newsprint is so acidic that some museums routinely copy news clippings and destroy the originals. Early broadsheets and newspapers were printed on paper made from the cotton rag pulp, but by the 1880s most newspapers were printed on cheap paper made from untreated wood pulp. The high concentration of acid and lignin in this type of newsprint causes the paper fibers to break down when exposed to heat, light, air, and pollutants.