Donating your object to the museum involves several steps. Should we choose not to accept your donation at any point in this process, we will be happy to help you find another appropriate repository.
To begin the process, please fill out our donation form by clicking on the green button at the bottom of this page that reads "View Form" or by downloading this form and emailing it to the Registrar & Collections Manager, Lisa Verwys at email@example.com. Please note, you must attach photos of your potential donation for the form to be submitted and considered.
You may ask to have your donation placed in either the "permanent" or the "non-permanent" collections. The permanent collections are controlled by museum staff and require special considerations and permissions for use. This helps ensure that they will be preserved as long as possible. Teaching and Living History collections, the "non-permanent" collections, are actively used. They are more frequently in the public eye, but will eventually wear out and be disposed of.
The appropriate curator will contact you within three weeks of submitting the donation form. The curator may accept the object for consideration by the committee, or decide that it is inappropriate for our collections.
After the curator's acceptance, all donations to the permanent collections require committee approval; this committee meets every two months. Donations to the non-permanent collections require the approval of the managers of those collections but do not require committee approval.
Upon committee approval (or, for non-permanent collections, after the manager's approval), we will send you a Gift Agreement, which is the document that transfers legal ownership of the object from you to us. Once we receive the signed Gift Agreement, your object becomes part of our collections, to be incorporated into our programs and activities accordingly.
Credit Line and Restrictions
You may specify a "credit line" that will become part of the exhibit label should your donation be exhibited. Please talk with us if you are interested in this, or if your gift is in memory of someone. If not otherwise specified, the credit line for your donation will read "Gift of [your name]." You may also request that your gift be anonymous; if so, you will not be identified to the public, but for your gift to be legal, we must have on file a signed gift document with your contact information.
The Museum prefers that object gifts be unrestricted, meaning that once the object is legally ours, we control its use. Any limitations or restrictions to this policy must be discussed and agreed to by both parties prior to signing the gift document. You and your family may "visit" your donation during normal business hours; please contact us a few days ahead of time to schedule a visit so that we can have your donation ready for you. Please note that:
Restrictions may not be placed by donors or their heirs subsequent to signing a Gift Agreement or other legal gift document.
Restrictions cannot be placed on donations to the Teaching or Living History collections.
We cannot guarantee that any object or group of objects will be exhibited or actively researched, cannot place any object on permanent exhibit, and cannot loan objects back to donors or their families.
What We Can & Can't Accept
The Museum respects the protection and preservation of natural and cultural resources; to this end, we cannot accept: