Donations of Artifacts and Papers
Our collection of original artifacts, letters and documents from the entire global war is the most comprehensive in the world. It continues to grow because items of interest surface regularly. This adds layers to the complex, international story that we are telling. We become an even greater resource for visitors, curators and teachers.
Do we accept donations?
We are actively accepting unrestricted donations of artifacts and papers that will increase our ability to tell the complex story of the War. We cannot promise to exhibit pieces but we are careful to accept only artifacts and papers that we believe will be used in our permanent, special or loan exhibits, or will be of value for research.
What do we accept?
American uniforms – Apart from unusual circumstances, we aren’t able to accept American uniforms, helmets, hats and medals EXCEPT for Marine Corps, which will be part of our expanded Pacific War section.
European and Pacific theatres – We already have sufficient examples of helmets, hats, medals, guns and uniforms from the European Theatre. We are in need of more uniforms and artifacts from the Pacific Theatre for the expanded Pacific War.
Russian, Japanese, Italian and Chinese artifacts – These are of high interest for exhibits which we are expanding.
Photographs – These are an important part of the Archives but we cannot accept personal or training photographs. These areas are well covered.
Correspondence – This is an area which we have sufficiently covered in the Archives EXCEPT for unusual situations such as the Pacific, combat or prisoners of war. Archives that include both sides of a correspondence are always of interest, as are letters that describe significant events and/or well-known wartime figures.
The importance of a personal story.
We will almost always replace an artifact on display with a similar one that has a personal story with it. An important part of what we teach is that war is personal. We strive to make our exhibits as personal as possible. A helmet is just another helmet but a helmet identified with a person whose story can be told, is of great interest to us. We don’t want these stories lost.
Your donation is tax deductible.
The Museum is a 501(c)3 non-profit. All donations are tax deductible. In the case of artifacts whose total value is over $5,000, the IRS requires a formal appraisal. We can supply you with a list of recommended appraisers. IRS regulations prevent the receiving non-profit institution from giving an appraisal.
How to make a donation.
Please send an e-mail to Paul Cook at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by regular mail to our Administrative Office at 46 Eliot Street, South Natick, MA 01760. Describe what you have, and personal information about the user or creator, and photographs if possible. The personal history of the artifact(s) is particularly important.
DO NOT BRING OR SEND YOUR DONATIONS TO THE MUSEUM OR TO THE ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICE. We cannot be responsible for them.
Featuring your donation on our website.
We often feature gifts of artifacts or archival material on our website when we know the personal story associated with it. Let us know if you would like us to consider your donation for our website.