• Part of a roofline shows from one building. Trees with fall color leaves on them fill most of the photo. A lamp-post is near center of the photo.

    Harpers Ferry Center

Artifact Conservation

Preservation and conservation of the important cultural resources of the National Park Service require expert and highly skilled specialists. At Harpers Ferry Center, conservators meticulously work to preserve and restore objects of social and cultural significance. They work on diverse materials ranging from fine and decorative art objects to natural history specimens.

Harpers Ferry Center provides professional conservation services that ensure the long-term preservation of museum objects in national park collections. Our staff:

  • Treat objects for exhibition and long term storage
  • Participate in the HFC exhibit program
  • Perform collection condition surveys and conduct preventive care training
  • Research and analyze artifact materials and topics related to NPS collections for improved preservation and interpretation

Seven laboratories are equipped to examine, analyze, and document materials and perform treatments that stabilize and extend the life of an object. Information accumulated from an examination often contributes to the interpretation of the object. Current staff specializations include furniture, decorative arts, paper, textiles, metals, and ethnographic and archeological objects.

Conservators assist with HFC historic furnishings projects, and they are a vital component of the exhibit development program. They stabilize objects for display and make recommendations about the exhibit environment.

The staff is available to advise parks about any aspect of object preservation and care. They travel to survey collections, develop preventive care strategies, and provide training on the preservation of collections. They examine and treat objects from park collections and advise parks on obtaining conservation assistance.

Contact Us

Harpers Ferry Center has an initial contact point to assist parks with their media needs. Call or email us to request information on our artifact conservation services, to get answers to technical questions, or to obtain cost estimates. Contact Us

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