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About Donating Objects 


Please call and make an appointment before bringing objects to the Museum.  765 653-8419

Thank you for considering the Putnam County Museum (PCM) as you make decisions about a new home for your cherished possessions. We want you to understand and be comfortable with our process for accepting and handling donations before you reach your decision.


When donations arrive, we take them in on a temporary custody basis while we assess whether or not to accept. During this time you, the potential donor, retain ownership. 


You will fill out a form to provide information and history of the item(s) and Temporary Custody Receipt on which you can express your wishes as to the disposition of any items not accepted for conservation. 


Please know that we add artifacts or materials to our collection selectively. Not all donations go into the permanent collection. Some are chosen for conservation for future generations. Others are chosen for hands-on use in our education collection.


Also, please know that the Museum manages thousands of artifacts that rotate between storage and exhibits. Your artifact may not be on display when you visit. This does not mean that your artifact is any less important to us or to our mission. 


Our accessions committee reviews potential accessions every 30-60 days. The team considers a number of factors. Objects for the collection should be: 

  • safe to handle

  • have free and clear title

  • have a Putnam County connection 

  • come with a great story, accurate historical information, or provenance

  • be in as good or better quality than like items already in the collection

  • be of a size and condition so that the Museum can provide for the storage, protection, and future care.


When items are accepted for the collection, we will execute a Deed of Gift which states that you “do hereby irrevocably and unconditionally give and transfer to the Museum all right, title, and interest, including copyright, trademark, and related interests in and to the following described property.”  


The Museum cares for accessioned objects to the best of its ability and available resources. Whenever possible, we store artifacts in acid-free boxes and endeavor to protect them from light, pests, and climate changes.


Conservation can be costly. Link here to see pricing on archival supplies: Donations are gratefully accepted. 


From time to time, the accessions committee decides to deaccession artifacts. The committee may deaccession artifacts that have been determined no longer to be relevant or useful to the purposes and activities of the Museum. Artifacts that have lost physical integrity, pose a threat or danger, and/or cannot be properly stored, used or preserved may be deaccessioned. 


Records of deaccessioned artifacts are permanently maintained by the Museum. Deaccessioned items are disposed of by sale or donation to a nonprofit institution, sale to a reputable for-profit institution, or public auction.

Donation Paperwork 


To get a headstart on processing objects for donation to the collection, you may download and fill out the "History of Object" form and the "Temporary Custody Receipt" that will accompany your item(s) through the accessions process.

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