Do you know at Independence National Historical Park there are over 4,179,356 objects that are a part of the permanent collection? Sixty-one percent of these are archival records, 38% are archaeological specimens, and less than 1% is history objects (furniture, books, clothing, coins, household goods, etc.). That is a lot of historically significant material that needs to be maintained and preserved for the American People.
As the stewards of the collection, our Cultural Resource Management Team (CRM) constantly reviews the artifacts on display for wear and damage. Our collection faces many harmful elements such as age, the environment, and even past preservation methods! Yes, one of the more detrimental effects an artifact can encounter is from well-meaning conservation methods from the past that, at the time, were the leading techniques of preservation.
To answer Independence’s call for help with preserving the collections, the Friends of Independence started the Adopt-an-Artifact Program. This program allows individuals or groups to “adopt” an historic artifact that needs conservation. The adopter(s) can choose to fund the entire conservation process or a portion of the program. The Friends will manage the funds in a restricted account designated solely for that purpose.
Benefits of adopting
When you adopt an artifact, you will receive the following:
- An opportunity to see the damaged object up close
- History of the artifact
- A meet and greet with the conservator to talk about the project
- First glimpse of the finished work
- Recognition on our website and in our Annual Report
And, of course, the opportunity to preserve a piece of American History for future generations.