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Silk/Rayon Escape Map Storage


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I was wondering about storage of silk/rayon escape maps. These were folded and placed in pouches during the war. Should they be kept folded up along their original creases or flattened out or rolled for long term storage? Additionally, does the collector market prefer these with their original fold creases or flattened out without the creases?

 

Here is an example of a map that still exhibits its original folds.

 

 

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My opinion would be to leave it as it is folded up. Unfold it and take a picture and fold it back up the way it was being very careful return it to the way it was originally folded. I personally believe it will retain its value better if its left folded up in its original form. Unless it gets wet or is exposed to something it will probably last long after we are gone. The more you handle it the more likely it will get something on it.

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  • 1 month later...

I would actually advise either storing it flat or rolling it, because if you keep it folded up there is the chance that at some point you or someone else down the line would not be able to unfold it at some time. That is just my two cents but I don't know from a value standpoint if not keeping it folded would hurt the value.

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If you roll it use a inert/archival type linen or muslin to protect it.I have seen this done with Civil war blankets at a museum at Camp Dodge.

 

I havent had any issues leaving them folded.I have owned some over 30 years and they came right from vets when I was a kid.I just keep them out of the light.Some were in zip loc plastic bags and show no issues.THe bags are not the best option but its how I was able to keep them at the time.

In Memoriam:
Lieutenant J.Kostelec 1-3 First Special Service Force MIA/PD 4 March 1944 Italy
I HAVE SEEN THE ENEMY AND IT IS DAYLIGHT
Forget about the tips..We'll get hell to pay (AC/DC)
"If you cant get out and run with the big dogs then sit on the porch and bark at the cars going by.."

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  • 11 months later...

The only issue with leaving them folded will be that the material will get weaker along the folds. If you store it folded, and I am facing the same issue with one of mine, the fabric may tear if you unfold it down the road. The problem with unfolding them and storing them flat is that they will take up a lot of space like that. It is a catch 22. Fortunately they aren't made of paper so they will hold up better if you leave them folded.

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