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Gift Books

Snell Library welcomes and gratefully accepts gifts of books and other items that extend and complement our collections.   

What to Donate

  • Of particular interest are scholarly items in good condition that support the teaching and research mission of the University.
  • Gifts may supplement the collection, replace missing and worn copies, or be offered to a used book dealer or donated to a charitable organization. The Library requests that the donor not place restrictions on the materials or their disposition.
  • Only materials in good physical condition will be added to the collection.
  • Because of the high cost of storage and processing, the Library is unable to accept materials that fall outside our collection guidelines such as:
    • Textbooks older than three years
    • Popular magazines
    • Scattered or single issues of periodicals
  • If you have organizational records or personal papers to donate, please contact Archives and Special Collections, (617.373.2351;  archives [at]

How to Donate

  • If you are considering having your gift items appraised for tax purposes, please do so prior to making the donation. Due to legal reasons, the Library cannot supply cash appraisals for donated books.
  • Estimate the value of your gift.  The attached letter (PDF) may be used as a guide for appraising your items. Please be aware that the values in the letter are merely suggested and are therefore non-binding.
  • Complete and sign the Gift Agreement (PDF). The Library also encourages donors to attach a list of materials including the title, description and condition of each item.
  • Deliver the items and Gift Agreement to the library. If assistance with delivery is required please contact (617) 373-2001.
  • All donations are acknowledged with a letter from the Dean of Libraries stating the number of volumes and the date of receipt.  It is the donor’s responsibility to prepare a list of materials donated upon delivery.

Helpful resources on valuation and tax deductions


a.lewontin [at] (subject: Gift%20books) (Amy Lewontin)
Collection Development Librarian
Tel: (617) 373-2001