From the Associated Press:
An assessment of the Rhode Island state archives has found that the state’s copy of the Bill of Rights and other historically important items are at risk of damage because there isn’t enough space to store them properly.
Secretary of State Nellie Gorbea on Tuesday released the assessment by the Northeast Document Conservation Center in Andover, Massachusetts, and suggested constructing a new building for the archives. The Archives is home to more than 10 million items in a variety of formats dating back to 1638.
The report’s authors found 35% of the collection was at “high priority” for conservation, meaning that in its current state, the item is too fragile to be handled and damage will occur during its next use. In addition to the Bill of Rights, other notable “high risk” items include:
- The Gaspee Commission papers related to the 1772 burning of the British schooner
- Declaration of Independence, Stone Printing, 1823
- Battle of Rhode Island Map, General Sullivan’s Expedition, 1778
- The Dorr Rebellion Map of Roads Leading to Chepachet, 1842
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