Making a Damaged Letter Legible

Dear Donia,

How can I restore an old, damaged letter so that it's legible?  

damaged letter

Q. Dear Donia,

We found a letter written by my mother's father inside my deceased uncle's passport dated 1956. My uncle died in a tragic airline fire and the letter is very difficult to read as the writings from the front and back of the page are as one. Can I bring this letter to a professional to review and make legible? We live in Oakville, Ontario, Canada. Thank you, Marisa

A. Dear Marisa,

I am sorry to hear about the tragic death of your uncle but I am glad to hear you still have some memories from him. 

A professional conservator with access to or experience in multispectral imaging will possibly be able to help. How much they will be able to bring up digitally will depend on the type of ink that was used to write the letter.

It would be best to start with a professional paper conservator near you who will be able to take a look at the letter and give you more concrete advice on whether the text could be brought up through multispectral imaging techniques. To find a conservator near you, consult the Canadian Association of Professional Conservators

I hope someone can help you read this letter.