Amesbury Public Library's most historic and rare documents are no longer in town. Amesbury Public Library officials revealed that most of the library's history and genealogy collections were moved last week to a Boston storage facility. Worst of all, the documents are not available to researchers and genealogists. Amesbury is one of the most heavily researched areas for genealogists researching Massachusetts ancestry.
Deteriorating conditions in the library's vault and local history room made the move a necessity, according to library officials. The vault's dehumidifier and electrical system controlling temperature failed two weeks ago, prompting the move. The 20-year-old vault failed for the first time earlier this summer, but library personnel were able to make basic repairs to keep it running for a little while longer. Library Director Marc Lankin said temperatures inside the vault reached 90 degrees at one point, well above the optimal temperature of 65-70 degrees. The vault was also unable to sustain a constant humidity level of 50-55.
"Because we could no longer guarantee the integrity of these important parts of Amesbury history, it became necessary to take action to preserve them," Reference Librarian Jen Haven said.
Details may be found at http://www2.townonline.com/amesbury/localRegional/view.bg?articleid=91883