Dr. Melissa Tedone holds a dual appointment as Lab Head for Book & Library Materials Conservation at Winterthur Museum, Garden, and Library, and Affiliated Associate Professor in the Winterthur/University of Delaware Program in Art Conservation (WUDPAC). She is a Professional Associate of the American Institute for Conservation (AIC), and currently serves as Chair of the AIC Book & Paper Group.
Melissa earned her doctorate in Slavic literary history at Yale University, where her passion for archival research evolved into a passion for preserving the cultural record. She then attended the Preservation and Conservation Studies program at the University of Texas at Austin's School of Information, and graduated with an MSIS and Certificate of Advanced Study in the Conservation of Library and Archival Materials.
At Winterthur, Melissa heads the Library Lab, which is responsible for books in the Museum collection and all of the Library’s collections, including printed books and periodicals, manuscript and archival materials, ephemera, photographic materials, and electronic media. At WUDPAC, Melissa oversees library and archives conservation education, which includes teaching the first-year Library Materials Block, as well as supervising majors in their second and third years.
Working in partnership with the Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCU) Library Alliance, Melissa serves as PI, Program Co-Coordinator, and a Site Supervisor for the HBCU Library Preservation Internship Program, which introduces advanced HCBU undergraduates to careers in library preservation through funded summer internships at nationally-recognized library conservation labs.
Melissa's current research activities include investigations into the industrialization of the Western book, with a specific focus on the materiality and technology of Victorian-era, cloth-case publishers' bindings; the history, creation, and conservation of decorated papers used in bookbinding; and diversity, equity, and inclusion in conservation education.
Melissa is the lead conservator of the Poison Book Project, an analysis of potentially toxic pigments coloring Victorian-era bookcloth, For more about this project, please visit the Winterthur Wiki.