Donations

Donations

To preserve our past for future generations, the Louisiana Research Collection depends on the help of persons interested in preserving the unique culture of our state. If you know of letters, diaries, scrapbooks, photographs, or other Louisiana books or documents that should be saved for future students and scholars, please contact us.

The links at left review a few different aspects of donations, but in brief, we need both donations-in-kind (books, documents, etc.) and financial donations.

We would be happy to discuss with you the different ways you can support our work, as well as welcome you to our department and give you a personal tour of the work we are doing.

For more information or to schedule a visit to Rare Books, please contact:

Kathleen McCallister
Rare Books
6th Floor, Howard-Tilton Memorial Library
Tulane University
New Orleans, Louisiana 70118
504-247-1943
kmccalli@tulane.edu

Appraisals and Taxation

To fulfill our mission, Rare Books depends on the support and generosity of donors. Persons considering donating to Rare Books should be aware that the IRS has substantiation requirements for deductions of charitable non-cash contributions. In general, potential donors planning to claim a deduction of more than $500 for all non-cash gifts made during the year will need to file an IRS Form 8283 with their annual income tax return.

If a potential donor plans to claim a deduction of more than $5,000 for an item or a group of similar items, then the donor will need to have the property appraised by a "qualified appraiser." Under IRS rules, Tulane, a Tulane employee, or anyone in a relationship with Tulane that might not be considered independent is not a qualified appraiser.

Since Tulane is not a qualified appraiser for tax purposes, we do not furnish qualified appraisals. The donor is responsible for obtaining a qualified appraisal. If necessary, we can provide you with contact information for possible appraisers for your items in the New Orleans area.

The appraisal must be made no earlier than 60 days before the date of gift and not later than the income tax filing due date (including extensions).

Rare Books recommends that a prospective donor discuss gift or charitable deductions with a tax advisor.

IRS publications and forms are available at http://www.irs.gov/. The relevant forms for Rare Books donations are:

  • Charitable Contributions (IRS Pub.526)
  • Determining the Value of Donated Property (IRS Pub. 561)
  • Noncash Charitable Contributions (Form 8283)
  • Instructions for Form 8283
  • Thank you for your support.

How to Make a Donation

First, contact either Kathleen McCallister (504-247-1934, kmccalli@tulane.edu) to discuss any potential donations. For materials that might fall outside of our collecting criteria, we can work with you to find a more appropriate professional archives, library, or museum.

Tulane is not a qualified book appraiser and cannot provide appraisals of your items/collection. If necessary, we can provide you with contact information for possible appraisers for your items in the New Orleans area.

Please box materials before bringing them to the Rare Books department.

You may also purchase something for Rare Books. For example, if you wish to remember a friend who has a special interest in a topic covered by our collections, we can select something in the price range you specify. This saves you the trouble of selecting an item and ensures that your donation will not duplicate something we already have. We will be happy to discuss a selection with you.

Please note:

Gifts not appropriate for our collection can still benefit the department. For example, we can sell duplicate books and use the money to purchase books we do need, or we can exchange books with another library or vendor. In this way, even gifts we cannot use directly are still helpful and appreciated.

What We Need

The Rare Books department acquires, preserves, and makes available to researchers a variety of rare books and unusual collections. We are always happy to consider donations of items that will enhance our collections, or new collections of material that fit within our department's interest and mission. If you are unsure if something you wish to donate would suit our needs or not, just contact us!

Areas of particular significance or interest within our collections:

  • The American Revolution
  • British Shire Histories
  • Dog and cat books, particularly illustrated/unusual works
  • Edward Gorey (works by and about)
  • William Faulkner (works by and about)
  • Incunabula (works printed in Europe before 1501)
  • Kelmscott Press publications
  • Medieval works (original or facsimile editions)
  • Miniature books, both modern (i.e., artist's books) and historical
  • Nineteenth- and Twentieth-Century English Language Fiction
  • Swiss History

To discuss endowed funds or other naming opportunities, please contact the Rare Books department. We will be happy to welcome you to our department and show you how we are helping preserve our unique collections for future readers and researchers.

Kathleen McCallister
Rare Books
6th Floor, Howard-Tilton Memorial Library
Tulane University
New Orleans, Louisiana 70118
504-247-1943
kmccalli@tulane.edu