Boston Public Library's Rare Books Department Reopens After Mold Outbreak

The Boston Public Library's Rare Books Department has reopened after a mold outbreak.

The Boston Globe reports the department opened on Tuesday.

A staff member had discovered the mold on a reference book in September. A crew spent more than two months getting rid of it.

Laura Irmscher, the library's chief of collections strategy, says every one of the 500,000 books in the collection was cleaned. The crew used a special HEPA vacuum on the outside of each book. Workers cleaned the outside of archival boxes along with all shelves, walls, floors and vents.

Irmscher says the cleaning has already cost about $325,000.

She says the mold outbreak was ultimately the effect of a humid summer.

The library has consulted various specialists to determine how to prevent future outbreaks.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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