Always make an appointment before bringing a potential donation into the museum. You will be asked to fill out a temporary custody receipt when you arrive, providing your contact information and information about the object. If it is not practical to bring the object itself, please provide good, sharp photographs and a clear description of any markings on the piece. The information you provide about the piece itself, its maker, and its history informs our decision to accept it or not.
The museum’s Collections Committee, composed of members of the staff and the Board of Trustees, makes the final decision on whether to accept objects into our permanent collection. The Collections Committee meets every other month. After the committee makes a decision, you will be contacted and asked to sign paperwork formally giving the object to the museum.
Due to space and mission constraints, we cannot accept everything that is offered to us. If the Collections Committee decides not to accept an object, it will be returned to you. We may be able to suggest a different institution that would appreciate the gift.
Bennington Museum cannot return accessioned collection materials to the donor. Our collections are held in trust for the public. Once we accept your donation for the collection, you will be asked to sign a Gift Agreement, which legally transfers ownership to the museum.