Gifts of Library Materials

The University of Texas Libraries is one of the premier research collections in the United States. The Libraries’ acclaimed collections are the result of over 100 years of diligent and comprehensive collecting by subject professionals and scholars to build a Library that is virtually unmatched anywhere in Texas (and beyond) in both the depth and breadth of its holdings.

Most offers of gifts of materials will duplicate the University of Texas Libraries’ collections. In general terms with regards to popular research material, the UT Libraries “has it already." The nature of teaching and research and the needs of modern scholars are changing and so are the needs of the research libraries that support them. In order to continue to provide the best services with limited resources, including space, UT Libraries must be very selective in areas of distinctive focus.

The University of Texas Libraries will no longer consider unsolicited gifts of general library materials. This pertains to items of both an academic and ordinary nature such as:

  • widely-held research publications
  • popular books
  • journals
  • newspapers
  • textbooks

The Libraries will not consider:

  • personal libraries (including those housed in faculty offices)
  • department libraries
  • collections from other campus units
  • large, generalized collections
  • unsolicited estate donations

The Libraries do not accept walk-in donations or unapproved “drop-offs."

The University of Texas Libraries are interested in considering and collecting materials that support and strengthen our Distinctive Collections. UT Libraries’ Distinctive Collections are a defining feature of the University of Texas at Austin. Comprised of unique, rare, and contextually significant collections of materials and providing abundant opportunities for scholarship, they elevate the University’s reputation as a destination for research, attracting and inspiring communities of scholars worldwide.

Please contact the appropriate Subject Specialist to discuss the donation and to arrange for a review of the material.

The Libraries require advanced notice, including an inventory list of the collection being offered, and reserves the right to select only particular materials from the collection that fit within the Libraries collections' current needs and scope. If the material is widely held by other academic or public libraries, it is unlikely that the UT Libraries will be interested. Donation inquiries that are not made to the appropriate specialist or do not provide the required detailed inventory information will not be considered. All donations must be approved by the appropriate subject specialist before they are accepted by the UT Libraries or any of its branches. The UT Libraries also ask that donors consider making a monetary gift to help offset the costs of processing donated materials.

Paperwork for most donations is minimal.  For large collections that require an appraisal or ones that involve copyright conveyance or special conditions a deed of gift form is available here:  Deed of Gift Form

In order to make the most effective use of resources, the University of Texas Libraries reserves the right to determine the disposition of all donated material.


The UT Libraries cannot provide valuations of materials due to conflict-of-interest rules.  Donors are advised to contact tax experts or visit the IRS web site for details of taking a tax deduction.  Any in-kind donation valued at $5000 or more will require an appraisal by a qualified appraiser but most gifts to the Libraries fall below this threshold.

Other Ways to Support the UT Libraries

Please consider reviewing our Giving Pages to learn about other ways to support the UT Libraries and its mission.

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