MS1207 includes 320 Irish deeds spanning the period 1246-1691, relating to the Essebourne family, principally of Dublin, and those of the Meonis and Stanihurst families.
The treatment of the deeds was divided into three phases. The first involved a survey of the collection which provided the first comprehensive overview of condition, and the treatment and storage requirements.
The parchment in all cases was identified as sheepskin, with iron gall ink inscriptions. The size and condition of the items varied, however all of them were very poorly stored in paper envelops. They were extremely dirty, creased and distorted due to being folded, and many had minor tears. The majority had wax seals on tags, or metal seals on silk cords, which were fragile and in some cases broken or missing.
The treatment phase involved surface cleaning, flattening and repair. Tears were stabilised using traditional skin techniques as well as Japanese paper. No loss compensation was carried out.
The third phase was to re-house the deeds using a cost-effective method which would reduce direct handling by researchers, offer full support and protection to the seals, and provide a space-efficient solution for storage.
To achieve this the deeds were secured in exact-sized four-flap paper folders, which were attached to archival boxboard wallets designed to fit into standardised boxboard storage boxes. The seals were secured to the wallet base with parchment strips, with the depth of each wallet constructed to protect them from pressure.