Donate an Object
Nearly 100 Years of collecting and still counting
“I chose the National WWI Museum as a ‘home’ for my husband’s extensive collection because I wished to honor his many years of dedication to the preservation of WWI memorabilia. I wanted to assure the protection of his collection and to provide for its active use, benefiting present and future generations. The things which shaped my decision to offer the collection to the Museum were its national status, my discussion with collector friends about the caliber of the Museum, and my visit to the Museum which showed me the patriotism and unflagging support over the years of the Kansas City citizenry for the Museum.”- Wanda Hauber, who donated the largest collection of historical objects given by one donor in the Museum and Memorial's history in 2009. The extraordinary collection was that of her late husband, Carl Hauber.
The National WWI Museum and Memorial, a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, has been adding to its world-class collection since 1920. It continues to actively collect objects and documents from all the belligerent countries in World War I, as well as historical materials relating to the Liberty Memorial, which is a National Historic Landmark and Congressionally-recognized memorial.
The Museum and Memorial is currently seeking:
- European U-boat and navy uniforms
- African American, Hispanic and Native American materials connected to World War I
- American military women uniforms and other items from their service
- Published unit histories and state/county service personnel rosters
View a full list of WWI items the Museum and Memorial would like to add to its collection.
If you have a potential donation, you must contact the appropriate curatorial staff member in advance if you wish to bring any items to the Museum and Memorial for approval.
(Uniforms, weapons, gas masks, etc.)
(Photographs, posters, letters, etc.)
Director, Archives and Edward Jones Research Center
Frequently Asked Questions
What does the Museum and Memorial collect?
The National WWI Museum and Memorial collects objects and documents related to World War I (1914-19), the conflict’s subsequent impact on the global community and the history of the Liberty Memorial. This includes, but is not limited to, uniforms, equipment, weapons, books, posters, photographs and personal papers from all nations involved in World War I.
Will the Museum and Memorial be interested in receiving my object?
Please contact the appropriate member of our curatorial team listed above before visiting the Museum and Memorial.
I’m only in the area for a short amount of time and I couldn’t make an appointment. Can I still donate my object?
A Museum and Memorial representative will check to see if a member of the curatorial team is available should you arrive without an appointment, but if they are unavailable, we cannot accept your donation. We would encourage you to contact the appropriate member of our curatorial team listed above to determine if the Museum and Memorial would be interested in receiving your donation at a later time.
Can I leave my donation with another Museum and Memorial staff member?
Only members of the curatorial team are allowed to accept donations. If a member of the curatorial team is unavailable, we cannot accept your donation.
Why doesn’t the Museum and Memorial accept all donations?
The National WWI Museum and Memorial’s collection began in 1920 and is the most diverse in the world. While there are still many objects and documents from around the world that would enhance our collection, many of the most commonly-found objects and documents associated with World War I may no longer be needed for the collection.
If the Museum and Memorial accepts my donation, what happens?
You will be provided with a gift acknowledgement letter confirming the donation, together with the IRS tax form (if requested). The Museum and Memorial is unable to provide a monetary valuation of the donated items. A valuation, should you require one, can be made by a qualified appraiser prior to receipt of the donation.
To take advantage of your deduction, you must file tax form 1040 and, depending on the value of your donation, tax form 8283. To ensure that you receive the maximum tax benefit, it is recommended that you consult with your own accountant, attorney or the Internal Revenue Service. You may also consult IRS Publication No. 526, Charitable Contributions, and Publication No. 561, Determining the Value of Donated Property.
Can you guarantee that you will exhibit my items?
All objects are accepted (‘accessioned’) unconditionally into the official collection of the National WWI Museum and Memorial.
The Museum and Memorial's unique collection is used in two ways: research and exhibition. Many of the objects are used by researchers to better understand the conditions and impact of the war. Our archives and library holdings are also used by scholars to examine important questions and enrich the understanding of history and events of the time.
Therefore, a museum does more than exhibit objects and documents. Should your donation be accepted, there is no commitment that the object or document will be on exhibit at any point in time. However, it is still considered to be a part of the Museum and Memorial’s collection, and is still critical for assisting in research of WWI.