Our Mission

Our mission is simple — to help you capture, preserve, organize and enjoy your family's most valuable memories using archival best practices, methodologies equipment and supplies, employed by FA Logo professional archivists and museum experts from around the world.


American Library Association
Society of American Archivists Member Company
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Storing Your Archive

In the right box, in the right location,
your yearbook can last for years

Once all of your valuable memories — documents, mementos, photos, film & video materials, and digital files — have been organized and preserved in the proper archival materials, your family archive should be stored in a safe place within your home or a storage facility.

The ideal archival storage location will:

  • Allow for temperature and humidity control

  • Be far enough away from pipes or major sources of water (such as a water heater or appliances) or sources of heat (such as a furnace or wood-burning stove)

  • Be easily accessible

  • Be protected from direct sunlight

DO NOT store your family archive:

  • In an outdoor shed or building

  • On the floor (especially in a basement)

  • Within 10 inches of a brick or cinder block wall (moisture can pass through bricks or cinder blocks)

  • In a location that can be accessed by family pets or children

  • In a tightly contained space that does not allow for air circulation, such as under a plastic covering or inside a trunk or box

Ideally, all items should be stored at a controlled temperature between 65° and 68° Fahrenheit, with humidity levels between 35% and 45%. Light exposure should be limited as much as possible.

Helpful Hint: DO NOT stack heavy boxes one on top of the other. Stacking is fine as long as the boxes are of similar size and weight, and the combined weight of the boxes isn't too heavy for the shelves. Always keep the heaviest boxes on the bottom.

Environmental Controls

Environmental monitoring prevents
damage to precious memories

Professional archivists measure and maintain the proper temperature, light and humidity to preserve archival materials, and you can do the same in your own home.

If proper temperature and humidity are not maintained, mold or mildew can develop on your shelves and boxes, even on your materials. Routine temperature and humidity level checks should be performed, as well as visual checks for mold, mildew and light damage or discoloration.

In order to maintain proper temperature (between 65° and 68° Fahrenheit) and humidity (35% to 45%), you may need to use air conditioners and dehumidifiers, although the heat and air conditioning of your living space may be sufficient.

To monitor the conditions of your archive, invest in a hygrothermograph (or thermohygrometer). Some models are inexpensive and there are digital monitors that allow you to download the data onto your computer. Continual monitoring of the space will prevent problems from arising as well as contribute to the long-term stability and preservation of your archival materials.

If you find mold or mildew:

  • Move the item(s) to a dry, cool location separate from other archival materials.

  • Separate and remove materials from those that do not have mold.

  • Allow everything to thoroughly air out.

  • Once mold is in a dust-like state, take the item outside and brush it clean.

  • If you prefer to use a vacuum to clean, use it outdoors without letting yourself or your other archival materials come into contact with the vacuum's exhaust. Don't forget to thoroughly clean the vacuum when you're done.

Exercise caution if you're allergic to mold and mildew. It may be helpful to wear a dust mask while working with moldy or mildewed items. Mold can be a recurring problem, especially if both the mold and the environmental problems are not corrected.

Helpful Hint: Archival materials are subject to damage from internal sources, as well as external. That means that materials in your archive may contain harmful chemicals or other contaminates that can cause deterioration in spite of your precautions against external problems, such as mold and light damage. At least once a year, look through your family archive to check on the condition of your materials. If an object is deteriorating faster than those around it, consider moving the object to its own archival box so that other objects aren't affected. A professional conservator who specializes in the type of object may be able to help prevent further deterioration of the object.