Those of you who have been to one of our Church Records Stewardship workshops (previously called Records Management) may recall the "hall of horrors" images we show as examples of what not to do. These photos are not always fun to look at (unless you're me, and you like having the cringe-worthy learning experience). If you haven't been to the workshop and seen the hall of horrors, they tend to look a bit like this:
Unfortunately, we see a lot of tape. Why? Because it's pretty much the go-to office supply to fix a tear, and it works great in the short-term. It makes sense then that when library intern Yuna came to me with a sermon pamphlet she was cataloging and asked if the pamphlet she had was a common example of a paper repair, I fully expected to see some version of the above. Instead, Yuna managed to completely shock me.
Now, perhaps this repair was made before the invention of cellophane tape (in the 1920s). The pamphlet, after all, is from the 1840s. But, I have certainly never seen a stitched-up paper repair (and it's worth noting: I do not recommend it as a repair measure nowadays), and neither has anyone else here at the library. I've got a request out on Twitter (you can follow the library – our handle is @CongreLib), and I'll let you know if I learn anything new!