our everyday life

How to Store Old Family Bibles

by James Clark

A family Bible may be one of the most precious material items in the home, easily ranking with photo albums as an irreplaceable part of a family's identity and history. Family Bibles passed down through generations might be more than 100 years old, with faded covers and yellowing pages. New Bibles are often given to children at birth, with pages for recording life's milestones and major passages. Storing and preserving these heirlooms properly will ensure that future generations can reflect on their heritage and gain insight from the teachings of the Good Book.

Keep old family Bibles out of direct sunlight, which can cause paper and bindings to yellow and fade, becoming brittle in time.

Store Bibles for safekeeping by slipping the books into a resealable plastic bag and adding 2 to 3 small pouches of dessicant (silica gel), which absorbs moisture. Seal the bags.

Wrap each bag in soft, white cloth to serve as padding and protect the Bible from heat and fluctuations in temperature

Pack the Bible in an archival-quality box and surround it with plastic packing materials such as Styrofoam peanuts. Don't use shredded paper for packing as this attracts mites and other paper-eating bugs.

Store the boxed Bible in a cool, dry place. Avoid storing the Bible or any rare book in an attic, where excessive heat can damage the pages, or in a basement where dampness and humidity could encourage mold growth.

Items you will need
  • Large, resealable plastic bags
  • Small pouches of dessicant (silica gel) available at electronics and computer stores
  • Soft, clean white cotton cloths
  • Archival-quality boxes available at office supply stores

About the Author

James Clark began his career in 1985. He has written about electronics, appliance repair and outdoor topics for a variety of publications and websites. He has more than four years of experience in appliance and electrical repairs. Clark holds a bachelor's degree in political science.