This Sunday, the Council of Friends of the Princeton University Library will be holding a Book Adoption Party, which will allow attendees to view a number of rare items from Princeton's special collections and give them a chance to 'adopt' these items. The money from each 'adoption' will go toward preservation efforts and adopters' names will be added to a plate that will serve as a permanent accompaniment to the item. The Party is more than just a viewing/buying event, however; attendees will have the unique opportunity of speaking with and learning about these items directly from the Library's curators and conservators. Since preservation is at the heart of the event, attendees will also learn about the conservation process used Ben Primer, the Associate University Librarian for Rare Books and Special Collections, urged curators to take affordability into account when choosing which items they would put up for adoption. "I especially want things that I think anybody off the street can ," Primer said. Curators listened, with items ranging anywhere from $20 to $4,000.
The full catalogue can be viewed here. Click here to see a video of Ben Primer speaking about the Book Adoption Party. Stephen Ferguson, curator of rare books, emphasized the importance of the Book Adoption Party, commenting that, "we need people to help us with the mission of making sure our future has a past." I think this is a great way for institutions to offset preservation costs, but others may have different views—and I'd love to hear them in the comments section!