Gifts of Materials

Gifts of books and other materials have greatly enriched the Smith College Libraries' collections. Only pre-approved gifts that meet the curricular and research needs of the college will be accepted.  If you are considering making a gift, please read the Procedures below. Gift-in-kind donations should meet the same selection criteria as current purchases; that is, they should be scholarly works published within the last two to three years. Depending on the nature of the collection offered, other kinds of materials may be accepted.
The following materials will generally not be accepted:

  • Titles already owned by Smith (check the Five College Library Catalog)
  • Commonly-held titles in the Five College libraries
  • Popular fiction (e.g., mysteries, romance, best sellers)
  • Textbooks
  • Back or current issues of serials (unless they fill specific gaps in an existing run)
  • Materials in poor condition (moldy, pages missing, highlighted or underlined text, brittle paper, etc.)
  • Off-prints, photocopies, etc.

Smith College becomes the owner of all accepted gifts and reserves the right to determine their retention, location, cataloging treatment, and use. This policy applies to Neilson Library, Hillyer Art Library, Werner Josten Library for the Performing Arts, and the Young Science Library.

Potential donors to the Sophia Smith Collection, College Archives, or the Mortimer Rare Book Room should contact the curators of those collections:

Special Collections Contact & email Phone
Sophia Smith Collection Joyce Follet, jfollet@smith.edu 413-585-2979
College Archives Nanci Young, nyoung@smith.edu 413-585-2976
Mortimer Rare Book Room Martin Antonetti, mantonet@smith.edu 413-585-2907

Procedures for Donors

  1. Contact the Head of Collection Development, Pamela Skinner, pskinner@smith.edu (413-585-2961) or the appropriate subject liaison to describe the subject scope and extent of the gift.
  2. If the gift is deemed to be of potential interest, we will ask you to provide a legible list of publications that includes author, title, edition, and date. The Libraries may accept the entire gift or may return the list indicating which titles are of interest.
  3. If the whole or partial gift is accepted, it is your responsibility to arrange for delivery of the gift to the Smith College Libraries. The Libraries will not reimburse for shipping costs.
  4. You may request a written acknowledgment of the gift, but Smith College cannot provide an appraisal for tax purposes. See Tax Information for Donors below.

Tax Information for Donors

Upon request, Smith College Libraries will provide a written acknowledgment to verify donations. For information about tax treatment of your donation, please consult with a qualified tax professional or the Internal Revenue Service.

To find an appraiser consult one of these resources:
Antiquarian Bookseller’s Association of America:
212-944-8291

Massachusetts and Rhode Island Antiquarian Booksellers

Alternative Destinations for Your Gift

If the Smith College Libraries decline your gift, here are some suggestions for selling or donating your materials:

  • Your local public library
  • Local used books stores (see the yellow pages under “Books—Used”)
  • League of Women Voters (for annual book sale)
  • Mind and Life Institute
  • Or see the American Library Association’s fact sheet on sending books to needy libraries