Donating Books and Other Materials

More than three hundred years ago, Yale University was founded with a gift of 417 books. Out of this donation grew an unsurpassed institution of higher learning and a library that attracts academic luminaries from around the world.  

Today, Yale Library welcomes offers of rare or unique materials that extend and complement existing collections. Due to the high cost of processing and storage, we accept donated materials very selectively.

We must turn down all but the most extraordinary offers of rare materials. If you do not hear from a curator or librarian within two weeks of contacting the library, you may assume the library cannot add the materials you offer to its collections.

Please note that self-published books and audio and visual material (including phonograph records, CDs, VHS tapes, and DVDs) are generally not considered to be rare or unique.

Conditions of Acceptance

Donors wishing to give rare or unique material to the library are encouraged to contact the appropriate Yale special collection directly.

Any accepted gifts become the property of Yale University upon receipt. The library may make all necessary decisions as to their retention, location, cataloging, and other considerations relating to their use and disposition.  Materials accepted but not added to the library collections may be exchanged with other libraries throughout the world, sold, or disposed of through charitable organizations, or other means.  We do not accept unsolicited drop-offs of any material.

In-kind gifts to Yale Library may provide you with federal and state income tax benefits.  In accordance with IRS regulations, the library cannot appraise any donations.

Contacting the Library

If you are considering a donation of materials to Yale Library or have a question, please contact Julie Linden, Director of Collection Development:

For additional information about giving to Yale Library, please visit the Library Development homepage.

Other Places to Donate Books and Other Materials

Effective Date: 
Wednesday, November 1, 2023
Last modified: 
Wednesday, November 1, 2023 - 4:06pm