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Magna Carta Encasement

This video presents the fascinating behind-the-scenes creation of the Magna Carta encasement. This encasement will display the 715-year-old document at the National Archives. The 1297 Magna Carta being encased is one of only four remaining 1297 originals. Magna Carta is said to have influenced early American settlers and been a fundamental inspiration for the Constitution of the United States.

The Magna Carta encasement was machined at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) out of two solid blocks of aluminum and sits on a unique cart designed to support the document on exhibit. The encasement is air tight and is filled with humidified argon, an inert gas that, unlike oxygen, will not degrade the document. Elaborate instruments continuously monitor the conditions within the encasement for humidity presence and evidence of leaks.