FAQ: Donating materials to University Archives

If you have something to donate, or would like to help support our work, please contact us by email.

What should I donate?

University Archives works closely with donors to identify those materials of research interest which should be preserved.  No unsolicited gifts of materials will be accepted.

What is the official process of donating or transferring materials?

The legal transfer of the materials from the donor to the University Archives occurs when the donor reviews and signs a gift agreement formally making a gift of the collection to the library. Please note that University Archives can only invest materials and labor in the care of collections which it owns, which means we do not generally accept materials on deposit or on loan.

Will access be restricted to materials I've donated?

If your donation contains sensitive material, University Archives staff will discuss the possibility of restricting access to it to protect your privacy.  If the donation contains university records deemed confidential by state or federal law, University Archives staff will discuss this with you.

Will I remain the copyright owner of the materials I've donated?

Copyright belongs to the creator of the original material (such as a book, a photograph or a performing artist), however it can be legally transferred. To let researchers utilize our collections immediately in their research, our institution suggests the transfer of copyrights to the University of Oregon Archives.

How do you take care of collections?

Collections are kept in environmentally-controlled, secure, closed vault areas, and do not circulate outside of Special Collections and University Archives. Staff members retrieve them from the vaults for research use in a supervised reading room. When the department is closed, the facility is protected by an electronic security system and by the security staffs of the library and university. To provide research access, collections are arranged and described by experienced, professional archivists.

Should I donate money?

Providing physical and intellectual control of valuable collections is expensive. Donors who are able to do so are encouraged to provide financial support for the arrangement, description, and preservation of their papers or records.

Do you have recent sports pictures?

No, the Athletics Department holds onto films and images for several years before they transfer them to University Archives. However, we have a collection of recent photographs taken by photographer Paul W. Harvey, IV, and can be accessed here.

Do you want my old yearbook?

We have several full sets of Oreganas. Copies of the very early UO yearbooks, such as the Webfoot and the Beaver, are wanted. Archives is also interested in scrapbooks and diaries from early UO graduates, and photographs of campus events from the 1970s. We continue to add materials in support of our other collections too.