Packing and Moving a Collection (Yikes!)


moving a collection, archival boxes
If you’re planning on moving your collections, whether large or small / delicate or robust / across the street or across the globe, contact us here at Archival Methods for information on how best to safely protect all your items before / during / and after your move.


Let’s face it, each of us has a collection of SOMETHING. Maybe its large and valuable, and maybe its small and perhaps of little monetary value but holds tremendous sentimental value to you or your family (see below). Whatever it is, however, Archival Methods has the right solutions to make organizing, packing and moving a collection—large or small / robust or delicate / across the street or across the globe—a safe and successful adventure.


12 Rat Finks
A highly sentimental collection of old 1960s-era Rat Fink gumball machine figures. Ten cents apiece back then, absolutely priceless to their owner today.


As mentioned, everyone collects SOMETHING – whether its 1960s vintage Rat Fink gumball machine figures or tin airplanes / old family photo albums or vintage quilts / Apollo 11 crew signatures or Hummel figurines (see below) – Archival Methods has all the right suggestions for every collection’s archival care during a move, in storage, or proudly on display. Contact us today!


moving a collection, tin toy airplane          moving a collection, tin toy airplane


Planning on Moving a Collection? Contact Us First!

With all this in mind, we would like to encourage you to call or email us at Archival Methods to discuss the hundreds of different archival products that will protect your collections before, during, and after your move. We’ve got literally hundreds of years of combined experience in the field of archival storage, preservation and presentation, and would be happy to discuss your upcoming move and all the ways we can help make it a complete success, for you and for your collection.



moving a collection, old photo albums      moving a collection, old photo albums, archival storage box

Packing and Moving a Collection:  A stack of irreplaceable family photo albums BEFORE and AFTER.
Each antique photo album was placed in its own archival polyethylene bag and then placed in an acid-free records storage box.

(Please click on images for more information.)



moving a collection, archival storage box      moving a collection, archival storage box

Packing and Moving a Collection:  A textile storage box BEFORE and AFTER.
A textile storage kit comes with everything you need to safely transport and store textiles, quilts, wedding dresses, and other fabrics.

(Please click on images for more information.)



moving a collection, Apollo 11, Neil Armstrong      moving a collection, Document Storage Kit

Packing and Moving a Collection:  Historic paper ephemera BEFORE and AFTER.
A document storage kit is an all-in-one package for moving and archivally storing your collectibles,
important family documents, genealogical records, and much more.

(Please click on images for more information.)



moving a collection, Hummel          moving a collection, acid-free box, archival interleaving tissue

Packing and Moving a Collection:  Delicate ceramic Hummel figurine BEFORE and AFTER.
Delicate or fragile objects and collectibles can be packed and stored in short top boxes, hinged lid boxes,
or other metal edge boxes, each cushioned with archival interleaving tissue or shredded archival tissue.

(Please click on images for more information.)




Moving a Collection: Two Brief Case Studies


Cornell University Special Collections Library Acquisition


moving a collection, old cameras                  moving a collection, archival boxes

A private collection of antique cameras, photographs and ephemera being acquired by and 
moved to the Special Collections Library at Cornell University in upstate New York (from the top left):
1.) a small portion of the collection in one of its original display cases 
2.) the collection being gently packed into archival enclosures and acid-free boxes and staged in the office of the owner’s home 
3.) archival boxes carefully loaded into a car for transport
4.) some of the artifacts delivered to a Special Collections Library staff representative at a loading dock at Cornell University


moving a collection, archival boxes           moving a collection, archival boxes



The Brant County Museum

Moving an expanding collection can be a challenge, and the Brant County Museum in Ontario, Canada, has had first-hand experience with this, as reported in the local Brantford Expositor newspaper. They have been actively cataloging, archivally storing and preparing to transport the thousands of items they have in their collection, all the while exercising an extreme amount of care to protect their artifacts against the many potential dangers that could harm these often irreplaceable items while in transit.


moving a collection, white cotton gloves             moving a collection, Shredded Interleaving Tissue, packing artifacts

(Please click on images for more information.)

The Process of Archiving an Entire County

Brant County was initially settled in 1793, and the history of the land and its people since then is encapsulated in the 65,000 items that the Brant County Museum holds in its collection. With over 10,000 photographs, various maps, countless letters, and fascinating diaries from the inhabitants of the County, the process of not only itemizing their collection but also preparing it for transport to another location is absolutely intimidating, to say the least.

Lana Jobe, a staff member in charge of the archives, is aware of the amazing range of historical artifacts and information she’s entrusted with.

“We are brimming—overflowing—with items, and there was a big backlog of material that had to be cataloged,” she said.

Free Labor / Free Lessons

With such a large collection for a small county museum, Jobe and her colleagues have reached out to the community, especially nearby colleges, for assistance. While the students are gaining an intimate knowledge of the importance of preservation through the sorting and packing of the entire collection, the Museum is also getting much needed assistance in preparing for its move. Its a wonderful opportunity for all involved.



Contact Us

If you’re planning a move, or have any additional questions and would like more information on the archival storage and presentation materials to do it right, please contact us here at Archival Methods. We’re always there to help with any archiving, storage, or presentation questions you may have.