Silver Gelatin Photograph. No.2 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps, 1917 (photograph size: 290 x 370 mm). The RAAF Heritage Collection, RAAF Museum, Point Cook.
The pictures below show the before and after treatment images of a silver gelatin photograph of No.2 Squadron, Royal Flying Corps, 1917 from The RAAF Heritage Collection, RAAF Museum, Point Cook.
The board to which the photograph is attached was dirty, stained and very brittle. The layers of the board were separating at the corners, with general surface grime over the surface of the photograph. There was also heavy silver mirroring in the high-density (dark) image areas. Silver mirroring is the mirror-like appearance of some black and white photographs, where oxidation has caused silver to migrate to the surface of the emulsion.
The board was cleaned. Dry surface cleaning of the photograph was undertaken and an archival coating applied to the photograph. This approach removed the effect of silver mirroring and reintegrated the silver back into the image, without removing any original material.
The stained, dirty and brittle mount was attached to the photograph. There was heavy silver mirroring in the high-density (dark) image areas.
The photograph and mount, post cleaning of both elements, and coating of the photograph to reduce silver mirroring.