Object Donations

NOTE: Due to staffing transitions, all artifact donations are on hold for the near future (beginning August 13, 2014).  Please check our website periodically for updates. We apologize for the inconvenience.

One of the goals of the Montgomery County Historical Society is to preserve the material history of the County. Thus we collect items owned or used by county families, which shed light on the way they lived and worked. The artifact collections at MCHS consist of clothing, furniture, tools, recreational items, household utensils, and other items related to the daily life of County residents, past and present.

If you are interested in donating an object to MCHS please read the following guidelines carefully and contact us at info@montgomeryhistory.org or 301-340-2825 before bringing the object to MCHS.

Below: Dr. William Linthicum and Thomas Anderson accept a donation, 1973.



Donation Guidelines
We generally accept only items with a known Montgomery County provenance or history. Due to storage issues, we are sometimes unable to accept large items, such as furniture.  Decisions are made by a committee made up of staff, volunteers and Board members.

Overall, considerations for acceptance into the permanent collection are:

  • Montgomery County provenance
  • uniqueness of item to the collection
  • uniqueness of item in general
  • condition
  • conservation and preservation requirements
  • size


Collection categories:

  • Medical history, including 19th century, early 20th century, and veterinary.
  • Social history: textiles, kitchen and housewares, tools, weapons, agriculture, recreation, and miscellaneous.
  • Decorative arts: furniture, glass and ceramics.


Legal Issues
Donations to the permanent collections are tax deductible. MCHS cannot provide appraisals of objects for tax purposes. Restricted donations cannot be accepted, nor does MCHS allow indefinite or “permanent” loans. Donations are made with the understanding that all rights and titles transfer to MCHS.

Contact Us
For more information on the MCHS object collections, or if you have an artifact you’d like us to consider for donation, please contact:

MCHS Collections Committee
111 W. Montgomery Avenue
Rockville, MD 20850

Different policies apply to donating photos, documents, and other archival material. For more information on the library and archive collection, or to inquire about donations, please contact:

Pat Andersen, Librarian