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Frequently Asked Questions

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Is my donation going to be immediately publicly accessible or displayed on exhibit?

In telling the story of the Holocaust we depend on a large collection, of which only a small percentage can ever be displayed on exhibit. When new materials are accessioned into the permanent collection, they become available to staff, researchers working on a variety of projects, or any interested members of the public via Collections Search or during a visit to the Library and Archives. If you are interested in looking at a collection that is not currently online, consult the plan a research visit page for how to make arrangements in advance.

Does the Museum purchase collections?

We do not regularly purchase collections or historic materials. The Museum has a limited budget and relies primarily on donations from individuals or institutions.

What is the donation process?

Once collections have been donated and received, Museum staff will send you a document called a Deed of Gift. This important document states that you are legally and permanently depositing physical materials with the Museum and details your decision on transferring copyright of the contents. Materials cannot be made available for exhibition, research, or publication until a legal Deed of Gift agreement has been executed, signed, and returned to the Museum.

Is a gift to the Museum's Collection tax-deductible?

Yes. You may wish to consult your accountant to ensure that you have complied with the Internal Revenue Service’s requirements regarding gifts of tangible property to charitable institutions. As a non-profit, federally funded institution, we are unable to provide you with an appraisal. However, should you choose to engage the services of an appraiser, we would make your collection available to that person for review.

Can the Museum tell me the value of my collection?

No. As a non-profit, federally funded institution, we are not permitted to appraise or valuate materials. We cannot provide you with information about the appraisal process or cost and encourage you to speak directly with an appraiser. The following websites provide information about appraisers: