World War One artifact donation resources
Those who served in World War One have left behind many artifacts and souvenirs of their experiences a century ago. Americans who no longer have a place to store or display these artifacts from their predecessors, but who want to preserve them as part of the historical record and the nation's public memory, will find a broad range of opportunities for and resources about finding new homes for old memories on the list below.
If your non-profit organization or museum relevant to World War One accepts donations of World War One artifacts on a non-commercial basis, please contact us to have your website added to the list below.
The Pritzker Military Museum & Library
The Pritzker Military Museum & Library collects artifacts, books, journals, scrapbooks, service papers, letters home, photographs, cruise books, original posters, medals, etc. These items have special value and the power to tell the stories of the men and women who served our country. They help future generations to understand the meaning of sacrifice and selfless service. Our entire collection is made available to visitors and researchers through our circulating collection, digital archives, or by appointment to see rare books, artifacts, and archival holdings. When not on display, our artifacts, archival collections, and rare books are housed in climate-controlled facilities to ensure their long term preservation. The staff of the Pritzker Military Museum & Library understands that donating physical items is often deeply personal. We look forward to working with you and your family to preserve your collection.
The National World War One Museum and Memorial
The Museum, 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. Specifically, the Museum is 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. Please contact the appropriate curatorial staff in advance if you wish to bring any items to the Museum for approval.
Library of Congress Veterans History Project (VHP)
The Veterans History Project (VHP) of the Library of Congress American Folklife Center is primarily an oral history program that collects and preserves the firsthand interviews of America's wartime veterans. VHP relies on volunteers, both individuals and organizations, throughout the nation to contribute veterans’ stories to VHP. In addition to audio- and video-recorded interviews, VHP accepts memoirs and collections of original photographs, letters, diaries, maps and other historical documents from World War I through current conflicts.
U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center
The U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center (USAHEC) makes available contemporary and historical materials related to strategic leadership, the global application of Landpower, and U.S. Army Heritage to inform research, educate an international audience, and honor Soldiers, past and present. The majority of the materials that we make available to the public in our archives and in museum display areas have come through generous, unconditional donations made by Veterans and private individuals.
Naval History and Heritage Command
The NHHC manages the official history program of the United States Navy, fulfilling its mission to strengthen the Navy’s effectiveness by preserving, analyzing, and interpreting the service’s hard-earned experience. A professional staff of historians, archivists, librarians, museum specialists, and naval personnel carries out historical activities and supports the fleet. The Command oversees Navy programs and instructions related to history; advances knowledge of naval history and heritage through professional research, analysis, and interpretation, delivering a range of knowledge products and services; advises the Navy, other agencies, and the public on issues related to Navy ship and aircraft wrecks; and administers grants, fellowships, scholarships, and internships related to naval history.
Naval History and Heritage Command Archives Branch
The Archives Branch of the NHHC collects, preserves, and provides access to primary source documentation pertaining to the history of the United States Marine Corps. It supports Marine Corps University, the United States Marine Corps, and civilian researchers. The Archives Branch welcomes donation offers of personal papers. Personal papers are comprised of, but not limited to, correspondence, memoirs, diaries, scrapbooks, albums, maps, plans, and photographs pertaining to the history of the Marine Corps generated and/or collected by individuals.
The National Museum of the Marine Corps
The mission of the National Museum of the Marine Corps is to collect, preserve, and exhibit objects of interest to the history of the Marine Corps. To accomplish this goal, the Museum acquires a wide variety of artifacts and historic materials for use in exhibits, as reference materials, and to assist in the conduct of original research on Marine Corps history. The National Museum of the Marine Corps follows the ethical guidelines for acquiring artifacts established by the American Association of Museums.
Virginia War Memorial
In 1997 the Virginia War Memorial received its first book Gold Star Honor Roll of Virginians in the Second World War. Since then the Virginia War Memorial has collected over two thousand volumes on US Military History, Military manuals, and manuscripts from Virginia Veterans. The USS Birmingham research Library was named in memory of the sailors who died aboard the USS Birmingham in World War Two. The USS Birmingham Research Library selectively accepts print, a/v and electronic materials according to the mission of the Virginia War Memorial.
The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force
The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force always encourages the public to help broaden and enrich the history of the United States Air Force through donations. The generosity of the public provides many of the artifacts used by the museum to create, sustain and continually enhance its many exhibits. All donation offers are reviewed by the museum's Collection Committee for retention, either for exhibit at the museum, loan to certified organizations or preservation in our research/study collection. Please provide any biographical or background information, historical significance, etc. about the item(s) you wish to donate.
Minnesota Military Museum
The museum seeks artifacts to fill holes in its collection and to tell the stories of Minnesota's veterans. While the collection has many artifacts, many specific pieces too numerous to be individually listed are being sought. Just because you don't see it on this Wish List doesn’t mean we can't use it, but these things, in particular, are currently being sought: Items from Ft. Snelling, Native American items, WWI ration items, hobnailed boots, posters, photographs, helmets with painted insignia or decals, Panoramic photographs of Minnesota units taken between 1900 and WWII, and Pre-WWII Navy uniforms.
Ohio History Connection
At the Ohio History Connection, in coordination with the Ohio Department of Veterans Services and the Franklin County Veterans Service Commission, we are seeking donations of memorabilia from current and past military service members to help preserve and showcase the stories of Ohio’s veterans and their families. We are looking for items from Ohio service members who served in all branches of the military, including the Army, Air Force, Navy, Marine Corps, Coast Guard and Ohio National Guard.
Wisconsin Veterans Museum
The Wisconsin Veterans Museum, through the generosity of our donors, aims to commemorate, acknowledge, and affirm the role that Wisconsin's veterans have played in shaping our local and national history. The Wisconsin Veterans Museum will consider for donation military items such as uniforms and memorabilia, as well as archival material, diaries, letters, photographs, and books where there is a significant tie to Wisconsin..