How do I donate artifacts or documents to the H.A.R.P. Museum?
Due to the anticipated volume of offers the H.A.R.P. Museum will receive, it cannot accept donated materials unless you first submit a completed donation form online or send one by regular mail. If you have artifacts or documents that you believe would complement the museum’s collection, please use Object Donation Form to transmit a description of your proposed donation. Please try to include a photograph and measurements of the object or document with your form. You may mail back your completed form to the address below.
H.A.R.P. Museum c/o Irish Cultural Center of the Mohawk Valley 623 Columbia St. Utica, NY, 13502
Can I mail or drop off a donation?
The H.A.R.P. Museum cannot accept unsolicited donations through the mail or in person without your submission of an Object Donation Form and follow-up communication from the museum staff. We cannot be held responsible for lost, damaged or stolen donations that may have been dropped off at the Center.
How are potential donations reviewed?
Donation offers are reviewed first by the H.A.R.P. Museum’s Collection Review committee. The committee is made up of staff knowledgeable in both the scope of the museum’s collection, and the conservation issues associated with artifact and document care.
The committee uses the criteria specified in its current collecting goals and in the Donation Policy Document to guide its decisions. It also takes into consideration the condition of the object and the availability of museum resources required to store and care properly for the artifact or document as well as cataloging the material to make it accessible. The sensitive nature of materials or ownership of copyrights may also factor into acquisitions decisions.
Will the H.A.R.P. Museum appraise my donation for its monetary value?
The H.A.R.P. Museum cannot provide appraisals of the monetary value of materials proposed for donation or for any other reason because the Internal Revenue Service regards museums and libraries as interested parties. If you do desire an appraisal for your item, you are advised to get it done in advance of donating it.
Will the H.A.R.P. Museum exhibit the artifacts or documents in my donation?
The H.A.R.P. Museum cannot guarantee that any objects or documents donated to its collection will be exhibited unless expressly collected for that purpose.
Can I take a tax deduction for my donation?
The H.A.R.P. Museum, as part of the Irish Cultural Center of the Mohawk Valley, is recognized as a qualified charitable organization, thus the fair market value of your donated materials is generally tax deductible. For more information, refer to IRS Publication 526 “Charitable Contributions“; and/or IRS Publication 561 “Determining the Value of Donated Property.”
If I donate artifacts or documents to the H.A.R.P. Museum, will they be returned to me at my request?
The H.A.R.P. Museum cannot return accessioned collection materials to the donor. Once the Collection Review Committee accepts your donation for the collection, you will be asked to sign an Object Donation Form, which legally transfers ownership of the materials to the H.A.R.P. Museum. In special circumstances, we may make an effort to return the object/s to the donor or the donor’s heirs.
Can artifacts and documents be removed from the H.A.R.P. Museum collection?
The H.A.R.P. Museum may, with approval from the Museum Board, remove objects and documents from the collection through a process called deaccessioning. Artifacts or documents that are damaged beyond repair, have a condition that puts other parts of the collection at risk, are duplicative of other items in the collection, or are outside the scope of the collection may be considered for deaccessioning. Deaccessioned material may be donated to another museum or cultural or educational organization, destroyed or sold. In rare circumstances, we may make an effort to return the object/s to the donor or the donor’s heirs.
Does the H.A.R.P. Museum accept long-term loans?
The H.A.R.P. Museum does accept, on rare occasions, items from individuals and other museums for the purpose of exhibition and research. We do not accept loans for a period longer than one year, although a loan may be renewed on a yearly basis upon the approval of the collections committee.
If I donate an item to the museum, can I say how/when it will be exhibited or cared for?
The museum accepts items unconditionally. We cannot promise that an artifact will be displayed, as objects are displayed based upon relevancy to current exhibits, condition, and other factors.
That’s a lot of information! So I guess that’s all there is?