January 2017 brought exciting news to document restoration companies. A volunteer working with an archaeology team at Knole, a historic home in Kent, England, discovered two letters from the years 1603 and 1633 in the South Barracks attic. The letters, written on quality rag paper, offer a glimpse into 17th Century life as one contains a beautifully penned shopping list with items such as greenfish, pewter spoons, a fireshovel and frying pan. Paper has a rich history that spans continents, offering insight to human ingenuity and imagination. By understanding why some types of paper survived the test of time better than others, you can take steps to better preserve your own documents and reduce the need for archive restoration services.