They’re Scotties, Not “Boxers”: Some Simple Storage Tips

Recognize these cute little guys?

Maybe you’ve seen them during a tour of the Lodge House. Or maybe you read about them in a previous blog post. These stuffed toys belonged to Roberta Vincent, daughter of Packard Proving Grounds site manager Charles Vincent. These days, they live in the Lodge House and are the source of some fun stories given by our tour guides. We moved them to the closet in Roberta’s room, where they watched over the space with their solemn bauble eyes.

Given their history, these puppies are an important part of the Lodge House. We want to make sure they stay that way. In order to protect them from light damage, dust, and potential pests, I decided to give them a more permanent storage solution. Then I thought, Why not share some more storage tips for unique archival items? I covered a lot of tips for paper-based materials and anything that lies flat in a box in my first blog series. But historic collections come in all shapes and sizes, and we should be ready to accommodate everything we have.

Step One: Gather your materials.

For a collection this tiny, the requirements are comparatively small. All I needed was one sturdy acid-free box, several sheets of acid-free paper, and a single sticky note. (And the contents of the box, of course.)

This was a one-box project, yes, but it was important that it was the right box. There needed to be enough room for each Scottie dog to fit without being squeezed, pressed, or crammed in. Fortunately this box was an extra from the Phil Hill collection, and it was the perfect size.

Step Two: Line the box.

I took the acid-free paper and lined the box’s bottom to create a safe layer for the Scotties to stand on. Arguably this isn’t strictly necessary because the box itself is acid-free. But most archivists like taking that extra protective step, and I’m one of them.

Can you see the thin acid-free sheets at the bottom? Be sure to line your box fully!

Step Three: Place your Scottie dogs inside, one at a time.

In the Scotties went. Note that the larger Scottie can stand up inside the box without its head poking over the top, or its tail having to bend unnaturally to fit inside.

The little Scottie went in easily – I tucked him underneath the larger Scottie’s chin with lots of room to spare.

Step Four: Add extra padding and paper.

For extra cushion and protection, I tucked some additional sheets around the little Scottie, then covered the larger Scottie with several sheets and lined the sides of the box as well. You can’t be too careful.

Step Five: Label and store your box.

The last order of business was to affix a quick label onto the box. In case the box is ever moved or the Scotties are displayed somewhere else on-site, I wanted anyone else who handles them to know where they could be returned. The label Included a note about the contents and the box’s ideal location. Nothing fancy, just something to get the job done.

Afterwards, the box was returned to the closet shelf, where it’ll be staying for now – to keep all things related to Roberta Vincent in her former bedroom.

Do you have original Packard documents, photographs, publications, or memorabilia that might be of value to the Packard Proving Grounds Library and Archives? Contact the site for information about our collection focus and donation policies.

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