Make a monetary gift

Thank you for thinking of the University of Iowa Libraries as a possible place to donate your materials. Gifts in kind can enhance and enrich the collections of the Libraries; they represent materials that further the university’s mission and might otherwise be impossible to obtain. Every effort is made to accept only items appropriate to be added Libraries’ collections.

How to Suggest a Donation

  • Contact a collection management librarian with a general description of the items you propose to donate.
  • Based on our acceptance and retention criteria (see below) they may ask you to prepare an inventory of items.
  • After reviewing the list, they will decide which items are of interest to the Libraries.
  • Arrange delivery of the selected items to the collection management librarian.

Criteria of Acceptance and Retention

The Libraries must consider the costs incurred in evaluating, cataloging, preserving, storing, and providing access to donated materials. For these reasons, the Libraries cannot accept all offered gifts of materials. Once gifts are received, items become the property of the Libraries and may be sold, exchanged with other libraries, or discarded at the discretion of the Libraries.

Desirable Donations

  • One-of-a-kind, unique, or rare items.
  • Current publications of scientific, scholarly or artistic substance, especially those that have appeared within the past three years, in disciplines supported by the curriculum or research of the University.

Out-of-Scope or Unacceptable Donations

  • Copies of items already owned by the University Libraries
  • Journals and magazines
  • Materials in poor physical condition
  • Outdated textbooks
  • Mass market paperbacks
  • Vinyl records
  • E-books, e-journals, etc. (as licensing rights do not allow transfer into an institutional collection).


Generally, no conditions as to location, circulation, use, disposal, or marking may be attached to the donation. If you feel that exceptions apply to your donation, please discuss these with the collection   management librarian.


Federal regulations do not permit the Libraries to give appraisals or estimates of value.

Tax Information

Donors should consult a tax expert for specific questions about charitable deductions for gifts in kind. Generally, the fair market value of a gift in kind is deductible. A donation within a tax year valued at $250 or more requires a written acknowledgment from the recipient. If the donation is valued at more than $5,000, the donor must obtain a qualified appraisal in advance, and provide the Libraries a copy of the appraisal at the time of donation.


We will issue a receipt or letter of acknowledgment describing the quantity and type of materials donated to the Libraries. However, the Libraries cannot compile a detailed list of donated materials or at a later date provide a precise reconstruction of the contents of a gift for tax purposes. We will return with the acknowledgment a copy of any list supplied by the donor.