How can I preserve an old cigar box?
Q. Dear Donia,
I have inherited a cigar box from my great grandfather. Research indicates it was from 1883-1909. Part of the front side folds down so it can be used as a cigar display. Obviously it is fragile. Any ideas on how to preserve it? Thanks, Mary
A. Dear Mary,
I bet that the cigar box is beautiful. I have seen a few of them and the colors are so lovely and they had such pretty scenes on them.
The best way to preserve it is to not handle it too much—the more you flex the paper at the hinges, the weaker it will get. If you want to display it, display it somewhere away from strong light as this will fade the wonderful colors. if you want to display it open, be sure to support the lid and the front so that there is no pressure on the hinge—you don't want these pieces falling off!
I would also recommend taking some good digital photos of all the sides so you have a good record of it. This way, you can also display parts of it wherever you want and not have to worry about fading or hinges breaking.
I hope this helps you to be able to pass this on to your grandchildren.