Donating Historical Objects
Maine Maritime Museum welcomes the generous donation of objects that will complement and fulfill our collecting vision. We seek unique and significant objects or exceptional examples of commonplace items related to Maine’s maritime heritage and its direct global impact, from prehistory to the present. Our mission and the demands of caring for a sizable collection dictate stringent criteria for accepting new acquisitions.
How to Donate
The donation process begins with submitting a Collection Donation Form (below). If our curatorial staff decides to recommend the acquisition, they will prepare a detailed report using information from this form about the object, its provenance, and its importance to the museum’s collection. All recommendations must be affirmed by the Acquisitions Committee, Chief Curator, and Executive Director before the donation can be added to the museum collection. The donation process typically take from four to six weeks, and occasionally longer.
We cannot consider potential acquisitions immediately over the phone or accept unsolicited objects.
Federal law prevents the museum from providing appraisal values for donated items. The museum will issue a letter confirming acceptance of your donation, but monetary valuations must be issued by a professional appraiser. Donations are tax deductible within IRS guidelines—please consult your tax advisor. When donating an object, please remember that the museum does not benefit financially from such gifts. Accepting an object obliges the museum to care for that object forever and the conservation costs are considerable. Consider setting up endowment funds to care for donated objects or contributing funds needed for immediate repair or conservation to assist the museum in the continued care of your priceless pieces of history.