Is there an attractive way to safely house my family's 19th century Bibles?
Q. Dear Donia,
Is there a modern equivalent of the Bible box? I need an attractive way to safely house two 19th century family Bibles and a few smaller ones. I would prefer to keep them together if possible.
A. Dear Marla,
There are modern equivalents of the Bible box and they are much safer for the Bible than the old wooden ones that can off-gas chemicals that damage the paper and leather of books. You can get what are called drop-spine or clam-shell boxes and they can be fairly elaborate or relatively simple, depending on how much you want spend. The least expensive but most plain version is a clam-shell box made out of corrugated board to fit your Bible precisely. They can be purchased from Custom MicroClimates (MicroClimates™ Archival Acid Free Boxes: Welcome!) in central New York. You can also have drop-spine boxes made from a heavier book board and covered in cloth or leather depending on your budget. In Eastern MA, a good resource for finding someone who can make drop-spine boxes for your Bibles is the North Bennet Street School in Boston. They have a very good bookbinding program that also teaches box-making and have current students and alumni who would be able to help. You can find someone there to help by filling out the commission form at Commission Center & Job List at Boston MA Trade School » Alumni » North Bennet Street School.
Thank you for sending your question, and I hope you find a box that can protect your family Bibles into the future.