How to Donate Items

Do you have something you’d like to donate?

Because the large historical impact and interest in Linn County, we rely upon the community to donate precious items for research and display.

If you have something you’d like to donate, please take a minute to read our mission statement (below). It will help you understand our collecting focus.

“The mission of the History Center is to provideimmigration-exhibit-004 a unique community resource that preserves and shares the stories of our past, and connects people of all ages to the present and future of Linn County.”

Please note that we primarily are interested in collections or single items which relate to the culture or interests of the people of Linn County, and items associated with the history of Linn County in particular. There are some exceptions to this rule, however, and it is best to contact the curator directly when in doubt. We urge you to contact us because your generous gift may fill a gap in our collections.

Here are some of the things we collect:

  • Books and periodicals, personal papers (unpublished letters, diaries, etc.)
  • Photographs and audiovisual materials
  • Items manufactured in Linn County
  • Maps and architectural drawings
  • Clothing worn by residents of Linn County

If you have something really special but want to keep it for yourself, we can scan photographs, maps, and manuscripts to make their content available to researchers (subject to possible copyright restrictions).

To make an offer of donation

If you have an item you think is appropriate for our collections, please contact our curator Jami Roskamp at or call 319-362-1501.

Please do not mail or ship unsolicited donations to the Museum.

Staff will evaluate all items offered to the Museum. The evaluation process may take from two to three weeks up to two months. The more information you provide us on its history, the better. If we decide to add it to our collections, we will send you a gift agreement to sign and return; this transfers ownership of the item to The History Center.


We are sorry, but we are unable to provide appraisals. If a value is needed for tax purposes, potential donors should seek a professional appraisal service.