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Heritage Microfilm began in 1996 when the microfilm division of Cedar Rapids-based Crest Information Technologies was sold to Christopher Gill. The microfilm division was responsible at the time for preserving newspapers and for microfilming business documents. The business document filming portion of the business was soon dropped in favor of the newspaper microfilming division. Crest in 1999 sold the remaining portion of the company to Lason.
In 1999, Heritage Microfilm began digitalizing newspaper microfilm and launched NewspaperARCHIVE.com. Soon after, they began creating smaller "branded" newspaper archive websites in collaboration with publishing partners. Heritage Microfilm claims the Syracuse Post-Standard and Stars and Stripes among its clients for both microfilm and digital archives.
Heritage Microfilm now films more than 600 titles and scans more than 2 million pages per month.
One of their specializations is damaged microfilm recovery. They maintain an Extek 3441 microfilm duplicator, capable of duplicating at low speeds to prevent damage to Redox or Vinegar-Syndrome microfilm.
Heritage Microfilm uses Kodak silver halide microfilm for master film and primary duplications. They have discontinued the use of vesicular film for duplications, due to the poor quality film available from distributors. Heritage Microfilm claims to use Kodak BrownToner, a polysulfide film treatment, on every reel of silver-halide microfilm that they produce.