As destruction has swept through our region, many have suffered flood damage to the memories living in photographs.
Here are steps shared from the Louisiana State Archives office to recover water-drenched pictures:
- In general, wet photographs should be air dried or frozen as quickly as possible.
- Separate photographs from their enclosures, frames and each other. If they are stuck together or adhered to glass, set them aside for freezing.
- Spread photographs out to dry face up, laying them flat on an absorbent material such as blotters, unprinted newspaper, paper towels or a clean cloth.
- Keep the air around the drying materials moving at all times. Fans will speed up the drying process and minimize the risk of mold growth.
- Negatives should be dried vertically. They can be hung on a line with plastic clips placed at the edges.
- Photos may curl during drying. They can be flattened later.
- Photos that are stuck together can be frozen by wrapping them in wax paper.
- Later, as stacks of photos are thawed, individual photographs can be carefully peeled from the group and placed face up on a clean, absorbent surface to air dry.