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Gifts and Donations to the Navy Department Library

The Navy Department Library welcomes gifts of books, documents, and manuscripts, as well as financial assistance. Materials and assistance that enhance the library’s collections and support the research of US Navy personnel, historians, scholars, and other researchers are greatly appreciated.

The library is particularly interested in the following Navy-related items:

Cruise books for ships, Seabee and aviation units, and training activities.
Diaries, journals, memoirs, scrapbooks, and letters relating to naval service.
Welcome aboard, launching, christening, commissioning/decommissioning brochures.

Change of command and retirement ceremony brochures.

Manuals, ship and unit newsletters, and other official publications.

Documents, reports, and ceremonial certificates.
Menus, shipboard sports and entertainment programs and other paper ephemera.

Postal covers.

Naval, nautical, and military history books in all languages.

We generally do not accept :
• Commercially published magazines and newspapers
• Official personnel or medical records

The library staff review donations and/or offers to donate and make selection decisions based on the library's needs and its collection development policy. When it is necessary to decline a gift, alternative Navy and other libraries will be suggested whenever possible.

Gifts are accepted with the understanding that they become the property of the Navy Department Library, and that the library may make all necessary decisions as to their retention, location, cataloging, and other considerations relating to their use and disposition. Materials, which prove not to be needed in the library, may be transferred to other military and government libraries, or donated to non-profit agencies. Donors may request that books not needed be returned to them.

As a government agency, the Navy Department Library cannot legally provide appraisals of gifts; appraisals are the responsibility of the donor.

Shipping: Please do not send books and other items without first contacting the library to describe the material, and to receive shipping instructions. When donating ten or more books, a written list, including author and title of the offered items, must first be provided to the library.

Tax deductible financial contributions should be made to the Naval Historical Foundation to assist the library with acquiring books, manuscripts, archival supplies, training, etc. Please be sure to explain to the Foundation that the money is being donated to support the Navy Department Library.

Two donors recently made it possible for the library to purchase the expensive English-language official history of Germany in the Second World War published by Oxford University Press. A generous donation from Booz Allen Hamilton Corporation funded the research and preparation of the illustrated finding aid for the George Henry Preble Collection as well as another finding aid currently under development.

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