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Mount Vernon adheres to the policy pertaining to the treatment of architectural fragments adopted by the Association for Preservation Technology International, at a special meeting held in Williamsburg, Virginia, in 1995.
Williamsburg Resolutions on Architectural Fragments
Arising from our shared concern for the preservation and appropriate use of architectural fragments, we believe that the historic context is the preferred location for building components. However, when objects become detached, they require professional standards of care and preservation. In that process, our responsibility is to thoroughly document the historic context of removed fragments. As these objects represent a primary source of information about the past, we have a responsibility to interpret architectural fragments for the benefit of all. We therefore adopt the following principles as guidelines for acquiring, documenting, managing, preserving, and using collections of architectural fragments.
1. In recognition of the preference for in situ preservation of historic structures, architectural fragments should not be removed if such removal will adversely impact the structure’s integrity.
2. When architectural fragments are removed from structures, thorough documentation should accurately and permanently record the historic context of the fragments within the structure.
3. Architectural fragments and their associated documentation should be collected, organized, stored, maintained, and conserved in accordance with established professional collections management practices of the museum and historic preservation communities.
4. Institutions should adopt a standardized nomenclature system for cataloging purposes which will allow effective sharing of collection information.
5. Institutions which hold collections of architectural fragments have an obligation to share information about those objects through research, exhibits, and other educational programs.
6. Analysis, research, exhibition, interpretation, and other uses of architectural fragments should be planned and conducted so as to maintain the integrity of those objects and their associated documentation.
7. Architectural fragments should be used in a manner consistent with national and international standards for the stewardship of historic properties.