How do I donate an artifact to America’s National Churchill Museum?
As we strive to maintain professional museum standards and strengthen our collections, we have adopted specific policies and procedures to manage and sustainably grow our collections of artifacts. We continue to accept donations of artifacts into the Museum’s Permanent, Library, and Education collections to help us tell the stories of Winston Churchill, 1946 Churchill-Truman Day, and the relocation of the Church of St. Mary the Virgin, Aldermanbury, however, due to space and preservation considerations, we cannot accept all offers of artifacts.
If you have artifacts or documents that you believe would add to the collections of America’s National Churchill Museum, please fill out the donation contact form to tell us about the artifact. All artifact donations go through the following steps:
1. Contact the Museum and tell us what artifacts you have and any information you know about them.
2. We will send you a more detailed Donation Application Form to fill out to give us a greater understanding of your artifacts and their relevance to the Museum.
3/4. Bring or ship item to Museum and fill out a Temporary Artifact Receipt. Your signature gives the Museum permission to evaluate the artifacts for our collections. Ownership is not transferred at this time.
3/4. All donations are reviewed by the curator and/or appropriate staff using specific criteria.
5. All objects accepted for the collections are listed on a Deed of Gift, which requires the donor’s signature. The donor will receive one copy of the deed of gift as their receipt and the Museum will keep one on file in our permanent donor records.
6. Once this form is signed, the donation is complete and unrestricted ownership of the artifact is transferred to the Museum. After this transfer, the artifact is cataloged into the Museum’s collection.
Is the Museum currently accepting donations?
The museum has been collecting since 1965 and still actively collects artifacts and documents pertaining directly to the life and legacy of Winston Churchill.
We are especially looking for:
We do not collect:
If you do have Westminster College Memorabilia you should contact Westminster College at Westminster@westminster-mo.edu.
What is done with artifacts donated to the Museum?
America's National Churchill Museum uses artifacts for exhibits organized and displayed in the Museum, short-term loan to other museums in the United States, and for research by historians, authors, documentary film producers and students.
What visitors don't see on display is just as important as what they do. Once an object, document or photo is donated, it immediately becomes available to staff and researchers who are working on a variety of projects. We cannot predict what specific uses your items will have, but your generosity will instantly expand the amount of information available to the public.
Will my donation be on exhibit?
The Museum does not guarantee artifacts will be exhibited on a permanent basis. Once an object, document or photo is donated, it immediately becomes available to staff and researchers who are working on a variety of projects.
Where are the artifacts if they are not on exhibit?
Artifacts are housed in a state-of-the-art facility with an independent heating and cooling system and an independent alarm system. Artifacts are housed in storage containers specifically designed and selected for museum artifacts.
Can I see my items if they are not on display?
Donors are welcome (with an appointment) to bring family members to view their donations if they are not on public display.
How will my donation be credited if it is ever placed on exhibit?
The Museum allows, within reason, the individual donors to include what they want the credit to read. For example, "Gift of Mr. Bob Smith Jr." or "Donated in Memory of Bob Smith, Sr."
What America's National Churchill Museum DOES NOT do with its collections.
America's National Churchill Museum does not accept artifacts that it cannot reasonably expect to use for its interpretative themes in the present or future. Although an item may indeed be from Winston Churchill's era, we accept only those items that we believe will fulfill our mission. The National Churchill Museum does not place its artifacts on "permanent display."
What happens with artifacts not accepted for the Museum’s collection?
If the donation was dropped off or shipped to the Museum before the curator and/or staff made a final decision on it’s acceptance into the collection, whether for inspection of the artifact or the donor’s convenience, the donor will fill out a Temporary Artifact Receipt. On the Temporary Artifact Receipt, the donor selects whether they want the donation returned if the museum does not accept it, or if the museum is free to transfer or otherwise dispose of objects that are declined. If the donor selects the return option, the museum makes arrangements for the donor to pick up the donation or for the museum to ship it back, at the donor’s expense. If the donor does not want the donation back, the first consideration is to transfer it to another museum or appropriate institution.
Does the Museum purchase objects?
On rare occasions, the Museum may purchase an artifact, but has no regular funding for this purpose. As a result, the Museum will only purchase artifacts in extraordinary circumstances. These pieces are still required to meet the same criteria as donated objects.
Is my donation tax deductible?
America’s National Churchill Museum is recognized as a qualified charitable organization and so the fair market value of artifacts donated to the museum is usually tax-deductible. We recommend you consult with an accountant, attorney or the Internal Revenue Service for more information as well as have your artifacts appraised before sending them.
Will the Museum staff appraise artifacts for donors?
No. The Internal Revenue Service considers such activity by a 501c(3) a conflict of interest. The following agencies are available to assist donors with appraisals. If you plan to get an appraisal for artifacts, please have them photographed, photocopied, and/or appraised before sending them. America's National Churchill Museum does not offer these services.
American Society of Appraisers
PO Box 17265
Washington, DC 20041
Does the museum do repair or conservation work?
The Museum staff consults with trained conservators for this type of work. If you would like advice on how to care for objects within the home, please refer to our resource on conservation and preservation guidelines. Those who need an object repaired or conserved should speak with a professional conservator.
Does the Museum remove objects from its collections?
The Museum is an educational institution that serves the public. The artifacts within our collections support that goal and our overall mission. Most pieces given to the Museum will remain in our collections for the rest of their lives. Occasionally, artifacts are removed from the collections through a process called deaccessioning. The process is lengthy and includes an approval process for all deaccessioning recommendations. Pieces that may be considered for removal are those that
Artifacts that are deaccessioned are typically offered to other museums or appropriate institutions. Pieces that are in especially poor physical condition or are safety or health hazards may be discarded. Deaccessioned artifacts may be sold through a public auction venue and all proceeds from those sales are restricted for the purchase of other artifacts. Deaccessioned objects are not returned to the original donors.