November 12-14, 2021

Indiana State Library in Indianapolis, Indiana

Safety is of our utmost concern in order to host an in-person meeting this year. With the rapid spread of the Delta variant and 99% of Covid hospitalizations happening to the unvaccinated, the MRCG board has decided to require Covid vaccination for in-person conference attendees, in addition to masks. You must be fully vaccinated, meaning you will have gotten your final shot by November 1st. 

In order to limit registration problems at the conference, please email a photo of your vaccine card, in advance, to the MRCG Secretary at mrcg.secretary@gmail.com. If you require technical assistance sending an image of a vaccination card, or prefer to show it in person at the conference, please reach out to us before November 1st so arrangements can be made in advance.  If you are not able to be vaccinated, please reach out to the MRCG Secretary. The virtual meeting registration is an option if you do not feel comfortable or cannot get the vaccine.  For the safety of all those attending in-person, MRCG board members will not be able to register people at the conference registration table that have not shown proof of vaccination.

Registration Fees

You must be an MRCG member to attend the conference. If you are not yet a member for
2021, you may submit the $25 membership fee in the same payment as the registration

Early Bird                  $50     August 1 – September 30
Regular                     $75     October 1 – November 11
Same Day                 $100   (same day registration fee payable by cash or check only)
Virtual Option $25

Registration Instructions

  1. Download and fill out the registration form (fillable PDF) and email to mrcg.treasurer@gmail.com
  2. Click the payment link on the right. 
  3. Midwest Regional Conservation Guild is registered 501(c)6 and all payments are processed as donations.  Type in the correct dollar amount (meeting registration and membership renewal may be paid at the same) and choose one of the two payment options.  To pay without a Paypal account use the button labeled [Donate with a Debit or Credit Card].
  4. Enter payment information and click the [Donate Now] button.
  5. Check your email for confirmation of payment.  MRCG will also send an email confirmation.
  6. To register for preconference events please follow the instructions here.

MRCG will be continually monitoring and following all federal, state and local guidelines up to and during the conference. Masking and social distancing precautions will be followed even if no longer required local or statewide.

Click the links below for more information:

Call for Papers

Preconference Events

Conference Tentative Schedule at a Glance

Lab Tours




Posted in MRCG Annual Meeting, MRCG News, MRCG Workshop/Symposium | Leave a comment

2021 Meeting Scholarships

The application deadline has passed for 2021 meeting scholarships. Discounted Early Bird Registration is still available through 9/30/21.

The call for scholarship applications to attend the 2021 Annual Meeting is now open. 

If you are pre-program or a current student in a graduate program, and interested in attending the 2021 Annual Meeting in Indianapolis, you are eligible to apply for the scholarship. 

In order to be considered for the scholarship, you must submit the following:

1- 2021 Emerging Professional Scholarship Application form- https://forms.gle/efjgz5L8MDoi3Pxz8

2- Send your CV or resume to mrcg.secretary@gmail.com

3- One letter of recommendation sent to mrcg.secretary@gmail.com

The application deadline is Wednesday, September 15 at 5pm CST. 

As always, questions about the application process can be sent to me at mrcg.secretary@gmail.com

We look forward to all our emerging professionals attending the Annual Meeting in Indianapolis this year!

Posted in MRCG Annual Meeting, MRCG News | Leave a comment

Job Opportunity – Paper and Photograph Conservator, Chicago History Museum

Conservator for Paper and Photographs

Full Time

Chicago, IL, US

Requisition ID: 1230


Salary Range: $55,000.00 To 65,000.00 Annually 

The Paper and Photograph Conservator ensures the preservation of the collection and loan materials.  The Paper and Photograph Conservator undertakes diagnostic examination, strategic conservation planning, hands-on practical and preventive conservation work, and documentation for a variety of paper-based materials including maps, architectural records, prints, art on paper, manuscripts, books, and photographs.  The Paper and Photograph Conservator also educates and provides advice and technical assistance to the staff and the general public on the preservation, storage, and handling of historical artifacts and provides staff training and guidance regarding personal and environmental safety in regard to the storage and handling of collection materials. 


  • Undertake examination and assessments of artifacts, conservation treatments, preventive conservation work, and complete documentation for artifacts in the collection and on loan to the Society.   
  • Assist colleagues within and outside the department with environmental monitoring, collection surveys, packing objects for storage and/or transport, preparation of objects for public exhibit, and installation/deinstallation  
  • Develop comprehensive strategies to address short-term and long-range preservation needs in collaboration with CHM staff and outside consultants 
  • Develop and implement preservation initiatives in collaboration with CHM staff, including project planning, grant writing, and progress reports 
  • Coordinate exhibition conservation planning in collaboration with CHM staff (and when appropriate with outside contractors) including specifications for appropriate display materials, mounting techniques, environmental parameters, and installation of artifacts 
  • Participate in the development of institutional policies, procedures, and strategies governing the use of the collection 
  • Advise the Andrew W. Mellon Director of Collections, Head of Collections, and Curatorial Affairs and Registrar in developing annual departmental goals, objectives, and budget 
  • Advise CHM staff on preservation and conservation issues including environmental, packing, display, storage, and handling specifications for new acquisitions, collection materials, and incoming and outgoing loans 
  • Perform technical examination and analysis as needed to  identify materials and construction techniques, and to assess materials for use in storage, exhibition, and treatments 
  • Provide professional guidance and advice to staff, other organizations and institutions, and the public on a range of conservation and preservation issues
  • Maintain a conservation laboratory, including procurement of necessary equipment and supplies and the creation and management of conservation records, including examination reports, treatment proposals, and treatment reports  
  • Ensure the safe storage of all conservation materials and supplies, including adherence to all appropriate regulations regarding hazardous materials 
  • Collaborate with Properties, Security, and other Collections staff to maintain disaster preparedness; in the event of an emergency, serve as a key member of the Collection Emergency Response Team and participate as needed in any resulting collections recovery effort 
  • Recruit, train, and supervise interns, volunteers, and temporary and contract staff and mentor them to help them achieve their highest potential 
  • Conduct training sessions in handling and collections care for new staff, interns, and volunteers 
  • Coordinate and oversee contract conservation services 
  • Create a team spirit and enhance communication within the Collections Department so that staff members work collaboratively and in a supportive manner across departmental and functional area boundaries 
  • Contribute to and promote a positive culture at CHM by demonstrating the following values in their interactions with colleagues, external partners, and all audiences and through the products developed and services delivered


  • Serve as member or chair of Institutional Committees, as appropriate  
  • Host lab tours, workshops and presentations to CHM staff, outside professionals, and members of the public 
  • Serve as conservation liaison and provide professional guidance to regional museums and the general public, providing consultations, resource referrals, printed materials, lectures, and tours 
  • Represent CHM at local, national, and international forums 
  • Other duties as assigned 


  • Degree from an accredited conservation program; significant experience may be considered in lieu of an advanced degree 
  • Minimum of three years of experience performing relevant conservation projects, assessments and treatments on a wide range of objects and materials 
  • Knowledge of best practices for conservation as well as standard professional principles and practices for museums 
  • Experience in conservation for exhibition design and preparation of objects for exhibition 
  • Experience with relevant technologies, including literacy in commonly used computer applications; experience with collections management software preferred 
  • Experience working in teams, as well as independently, to meet departmental goals 
  • Excellent project management skills 
  • Excellent organizational skills and ability to multitask, prioritize, and work efficiently to meet expectations in a deadline-driven environment 
  • Ability to lift, carry or otherwise move and position objects weighing up to 50 pounds 
  • Ability to ascend and descend ladders and lifts 
  • Ability to supervise people and to manage complex programs and projects 
  • Ability to work under pressure 
  • Excellent verbal and written communication skills 
  • Superior visual acuity, fine motor skills, and attention to detail 
  • Ability to balance multiple tasks, responsibilities, and demands for time 
  • Ability to work under pressure 
  • Ability to deal diplomatically and effectively with all constituents  
  • Willingness to work occasional evenings and/or weekends 
  • Commitment to the mission, values, and programs of the Chicago History Museum 

In accordance with CHM’s flexible work policy, this position will be a combination of on-site and remote work, required to work on-site at the Chicago History Museum a minimum of two days per week.

To Apply: Please submit the following as a single document: cover letter and resume. Online submissions with incomplete information may not be considered. E/O/E D/V/M/F. No Phone Calls please.  

This job posting is not intended to be an express or implied contract between CHM and any employee.CHM employees are employees at will. CHM reserves the right to change or assign other duties to this position as necessary to meet changing business needs. CHM is an equal opportunity employer.

Apply at:


Posted in Job Postings, MRCG News | Leave a comment

Conservation Technician Position at Northwestern University Libraries

Job ID: 40972

Department: Northwestern University Libraries Preservation Department

Title: Conservation Technician

Job Summary:

The Conservation Technician is based in the Preservation Work group, reports to the Chief Conservator and has the primary responsibility of coordinating and performing conservation treatments and housings on both circulating and special collections materials.  They play an important role in disaster response, exhibits, departmental policy and other activities.

Please Note: Under current COVID conditions, this position is 20% remote work, but is anticipated to return to 100% on-site work. Work is in the library conservation lab and may involve working for periods of time in the library stacks doing collection surveys and assessments. Many duties take place in a lab environment (library conservation lab), but will involve working for periods of time in the library stacks standing, and/or bending/kneeling completing collection surveys and assessments. Must be able to move and lift up to 30 pounds, and have the ability to push/pull loaded book trucks.

This position will be on-site on the Evanston campus for a minimum of 80% of time (four days a week) immediately upon hire, with the expectation that the individual will work on-site 100% as in-person staffing levels on campus resume. This will continually be evaluated and terms may change based on business needs and/or as conditions related to the pandemic evolve.

For full consideration, please submit a cover letter and resume. During the interview process, candidates will be asked for a portfolio of at least three examples of book and paper conservation treatments, book bindings, housings, or other related experience.

Specific Responsibilities:

  • Coordinates and performs a variety of conservation treatments and housings on materials from the circulating collections.
    • Treatments include re-sewing, re-backing, repairing damaged paper, repairing existing covers, and constructing new covers. Treatments are completed in accordance with established departmental guidelines.
    • Constructs boxes, wrappers, and other protective enclosures. Assists as needed with shelf preparation and bindery preparation.
    • Works on projects in coordination with other library assistants.
    • Effectively manages time to complete deadline-driven work. Utilizes good communication skills to convey changes in scope of work that may affect project deadlines. Monitors conservation lab supplies to insure that materials for ongoing workflow as well as special projects are available when needed. Maintains accurate statistics for all completed work.
  • Performs a variety of higher level conservation treatments and housings with an emphasis on non-circulating materials used for exhibition, teaching and research. 
    • Treatments include re-sewing, re-backing, repairing damaged paper, repairing existing covers, constructing new covers, washing paper, humidifying paper and parchment, deacidifying paper, and encapsulating brittle or fragile items. Treatments are completed in accordance with established departmental guidelines.
    • Completes written and photographic treatment documentation to established standards.
    • Constructs boxes, wrappers, and other protective enclosures for books and other three dimensional objects.
    • Effectively manages time to complete deadline-driven work. Utilizes good communication skills to convey changes in scope of work that may affect project deadlines. Monitors conservation lab supplies to insure that materials for ongoing workflow as well as special projects are available when needed. Maintains accurate statistics for all completed work.
  • Assists with the installation of exhibits, including placement of materials, creation of labels, and construction of book cradles.
  • Assists Chief Conservator to insure that materials are being handled according to established exhibition guidelines:
    • Reviews material scheduled for exhibition or loan and works with Chief Conservator to determine if conservation treatments is required.
    • Reviews exhibit to insure compliance with established guidelines regarding light levels and placement of exhibit cases.
    • Assists in the proper packing of materials going out on loan and prepares preservation paperwork, including exhibition instructions and documentation.
    • Effectively manages time to complete deadline-driven work. Utilizes good communication skills to convey changes in scope of work that may affect project deadlines. Monitors exhibit supplies; organizes and oversees inventory of exhibit cradles and mounts.
  • Assists with disaster planning and response, assessment and review of new collections, and the implementation of collection surveys for preservation planning purposes.  Responds to unanticipated issues.
  • Participates in weekly conservation lab meetings (and/or training sessions) to discuss workflow and treatment decision making. 
  • Meets as needed with curators and other responsible parties to discuss treatment options and conservation needs.
  • Reviews policies and procedures; proposes improvements; raises issues to supervisor and begins to outline potential solutions for these problems. 
  • Monitors the professional landscape through reading and professional development.


  • Performs other duties as assigned.

Minimum Qualifications:

  • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent.
  • Excellent manual dexterity as demonstrated through previous bookbinding or conservation experience or other work requiring a high level of eye-hand coordination.
  • Experience with MS Office, including spreadsheets and databases; knowledge of email and calendar software.

Minimum Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities.)

  • Excellent oral and written communication skills and good interpersonal skills
  • Facilitates open and effective communication, cooperation and teamwork within and outside of one’s own team; respects the needs and contributions of others.
  • Effectively performs duties and responsibilities; displays attention to detail; follows a logical process/method for problem solving; supports organizational policies; anticipates demands/pressures of assignments and adjusts accordingly.
  • Demonstrates ability to work on multiple projects simultaneously.
  • Plans, organizes and schedules in an efficient, productive manner; anticipates contingencies and pays attention to detail; targets projects or initiatives that require special attention and focuses on key tasks when faced with critical deadlines.
  • Ability to push/pull loaded book trucks; ability to lift a minimum of 30 pounds.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Proficient in conservation treatments including full range of circulation collection repairs (rebacking, recasing, pamphlet binding, drop spine box and wrapper construction, resewing paper repair, repair of leather bindings with tissue)
  • Demonstrated understanding of conservation principles.
  • Experience using OCLC and ALMA library management system.

Preferred Competencies: (Skills, knowledge, and abilities)

  • Successfully uses multiple software programs independently, including Adobe Suite and FileMaker Pro.
  • Identifies opportunities to improve procedures and practices; shows imagination.

Please see the full position announcement available at: https://careers.northwestern.edu/psc/hr857prd_er/EMPLOYEE/HRMS/c/HRS_HRAM_FL.HRS_CG_SEARCH_FL.GBL?Page=HRS_APP_SCHJOB_FL&Action=U

The base salary for this permanent position starts at $17.06/hour, 37.5 hours per week.  Professional development funding is available.  First consideration given to applications received before July 7, 2021.  If you have any questions about the position, please contact: Library Organizational Development <library-orgdevelopment@northwestern.edu>

Northwestern University is an Equal Opportunity, Affirmative Action Employer of all protected classes, including veterans and individuals with disabilities. Women, racial and ethnic minorities, individuals with disabilities, and veterans are encouraged to apply. Hiring is contingent upon eligibility to work in the United States.



Susan Russick (she/her/hers)

Chief Conservator

Northwestern University Libraries

Northwestern University

1970 Campus Drive

Evanston, IL 60208




Posted in Job Postings, MRCG News | Tagged | Leave a comment

Ohio Preservation Council (OPC) Special Collections Conservation Care online class

Registration is now open for the Ohio Preservation Council (OPC) Special Collections Conservation Care online class.  This professional development opportunity will take place virtually through pre-recorded talks that attendees will move through, self-directed, between the dates of June 2nd and June 23rd.  The class is modeled after the in-person half-day class previously offered by OPC at the State Library of Ohio. 

Completion of all class modules is a pre-requisite for Ohio institutions interested in applying for an LSTA Conservation Grant.  

The class will kick off on June 2nd with a live discussion from OPC staff members as well as State Library LSTA staff on how to write a successful LSTA conservation proposal. Attendance is strongly encouraged, though the live kick-off will be recorded for those that cannot attend.  By completing the online self-paced class modules, attendees will gain an understanding of the criteria for selecting materials for conservation/preservation, basic evaluation considerations, how to find and work with a conservator, contracts and insurance, and treatment documentation.  Participants are encouraged to reach out to OPC staff with questions, inquiries about the grant, and for informal discussions about selecting objects for treatment.

Institutions that complete the required class modules may apply for the maximum LSTA award amount of $4,999. 

Up to 20 institutions may register for the virtual class modules. Please register only one name per institution. State Library staff will contact each registered institution to verify names of potential individual class attendees.  

Registration closes Monday, May 24th or when the class is full.

To register go to: https://library.ohio.gov/services-for-libraries/lsta-grants/conservation-and-preservation-grant/#ClassRegistration

Please contact Cindy Boyden (LSTA@library.ohio.gov) with any LSTA funding-related questions.

Posted in Non-MRCG announcements | Leave a comment