Preservation Publication Award: Laura McCann

Laura McCann, conservation librarian for the Barbara Goldsmith Preservation and Conservation Department at New York University Libraries, is the recipient of the 2018 Preservation Publication Award given by the Society of American Archivists (SAA) for her research article, “The Whole Story: News Agency Photographs in Newspaper Photo Morgue Collections.” The award recognizes the author or editor of an outstanding published work related to archives preservation.

McCann’s article was published in American Archivist 80.1 (Spring/Summer 2017) and examines the many complex issues surrounding the creation, use, and preservation of images in archived newspaper photo morgues. These large collections of images have substantial research value and are frequently heavily accessed by a range of users as documentary evidence of local, national, and international events, but they also have complex intellectual and physical preservation needs that repositories have not always met. The article is a superb resource for collection staff to better understand the creation and material make-up of their holdings and provides practical steps to improve storage and handling to ensure that the materials remain accessible for future users.

McCann’s supporter wrote that the article shares “excellent, data-driven information that fills a missing area of knowledge for the field” and provides “models of preservation activities for all types of archival repositories without regard for size or resources.”