Weighing Materials in Rare Book and Manuscript Libraries as a Security Measure against Theft and Vandalism

Everett C. Wilkie

Abstract

Rare book and manuscript materials have long been and continue to be obvious targets for thieves.1 No system for completely deterring or detecting such people has ever been devised, despite numerous security improvements over the years and heightened awareness of the problem among custodians of these materials. Any number of highly effective measures to prevent theft seem obvious and well known. One could, for example, completely collate every book before it was issued to a reader and then collate it again when the book was turned back in. Or, one could completely inventory the contents of a manuscript folder when . . .

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