Welcome to . . .
Celestine Rare Book Conservation Service
Ralph Weber, Rare Book Conservator
Most of my clients are large institutions like various libraries within the University of Minnesota, St. Catherine’s College or the Wisconsin Historical Society. However, I also accept work from private clients who often bring in things like old family Bibles, cookbooks or old children’s books. In addition to books I also do flat paper conservation.
I’ve discovered that each job is different and I often feel like a doctor evaluating a patient’s needs. I actually use some medical tools in my work and have to ‘open’ up books with a sort of surgery and do inner repairs. Most often books have to be dismantled, restored and reassembled through re-sewing and other elaborate procedures.
The work is extremely labor-intensive and time consuming and consequently
expensive. I don’t say this to discourage people. Costs vary widely.I’ve done books for twenty dollars or less. My philosophy of bookbinding is that I never do anything that is not necessary for the good of the book and that my repairs are reversible, while lasting for decades. It is money well spent.
- Ralph Weber,
Rare Book Conservator
540 Wisconsin Ave.
Amery, WI 54001