We welcome inquiries from individuals, families, organizations and businesses concerning donations of historical collections.
If you have materials that you are interested in donating, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
What We Collect
We are interested in collecting materials significant to the diverse histories and development of San Antonio and South Texas, with a particular emphasis on Mexican Americans, African Americans, LGBTQ communities, San Antonio authors, women's groups and activism/activists. In addition, we collect materials about San Antonio architecture and urban development; Tex-Mex and Mexican culinary history; Water Resources; Alternative Energy; and South Texas Businesses.
What happens to materials once they've been donated?
When materials arrive at Special Collections, they receive any necessary preservation treatments and are housed in appropriate archival storage containers in a secure environment. Materials are then inventoried and made available for research. In some cases, materials will be featured in exhibits, both physical and online.
Unfortunately, we are not able to accept every donation offered. Decisions regarding what materials to accept are made case-by-case basis and involve many considerations, including:
- Does the collection fit within our collecting scope?
- Is the collection largely unique or does it roughly duplicate other materials we already have?
- Is the physical condition of the material such that it can be preserved within our resources?
- Is the collection coherent and mostly complete, or merely fragments of what was originally a much more complete set of materials?
Monetary Appraisals for Tax Deductions
In certain circumstances it is possible for a donor to take a tax deduction for the donation of historical materials. We encourage potential donors to to speak with their tax accountants or attorneys about this possibility. We are unable to offer tax advice.
Donors are responsible for arranging and bearing the cost of collection appraisals. To get started, you may want to visit the American Society of Appraisers and our list of appraisers and booksellers in San Antonio and Austin.
These resources provided by the Society of American Archivists provide more information on donating historic materials.
- A Guide to Deeds of Gift
- A Guide to Donating Your Personal or Family Papers to a Repository
- A Guide to Donating Your Organizational Records to a Repository