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Grant number like: PG-258292-18

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Princeton Theological Seminary (Princeton, NJ 08540-6819)
Jenifer Gundry (Project Director: April 2017 to September 2019)

Preservation Assistance Grants
Preservation and Access

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
1/1/2018 – 6/30/2019

Princeton Theological Seminary Library Preservation Plan Development

A consultation with a specialist to prepare a comprehensive preservation plan for the seminary’s library. Acquired and developed over 200 years, the library’s collections offer a broad range of primary source materials to scholars in theology, religion, philosophy, and ethics, with a particular strength in the documentation of American religious heritage and the history of the Presbyterian and Reformed traditions. The special collections include early imprints, including American printed sermons such as Increase Mather’s Returning Unto God: A Sermon (1680); the Sprague Collection of over 20,000 early American religious pamphlets from the 18th and early 19th centuries; the Puritan Collection of English and American Literature, including over 5,000 volumes of Puritan and Nonconformist works (primarily 17th-century imprints); and the Benson Collection of Hymnals and Hymnology of more than 10,000 hymn books and works of secondary literature.

The Princeton Theological Seminary Library proposes to engage a professional preservation consultant to write the library’s first formal preservation plan, developing a framework for implementation that encompasses the most important and urgent recommendations of the recent 2016 preservation needs assessment survey. The collection is one of the largest on theology, religion, and philosophy in the country, housing a wide array of primary and secondary sources from around the world dating from the 1st century B.C.E. (cuneiform tablets) to the present. The collection also supports a wide range of creative advanced research in the humanities, including in the fields of history, literature, languages, art history, and music. The preservation plan will set measurable benchmarks and goals, as well as assign staff responsibilities, bringing structure to the ongoing work of collections care.