Donating items to the collection

Donations of published and original material to the Mitchell Library help strengthen our historical and research collections.

To be considered for the Mitchell Library collection, material must meet one of the following criteria:

  • originates in New South Wales
  • about New South Wales
  • authored by the citizens of New South Wales
  • of significance about Australia
  • associated with an individual who is significant in NSW history
  • about Antarctica
  • about the 18th and 19th century south-west Pacific region
  • adds to a Mitchell Library collection strength

The Library collects the following:

  • manuscripts
  • books
  • newspapers or magazines
  • photographs
  • archives of individuals and organisations
  • pictures (watercolours, prints, drawings, framed works)
  • maps and plans
  • posters, postcards, pamphlets or ephemera
  • digital publications including websites, or blogs.

Further information regarding the Library’s collecting policy is in the Library Collection Development Policy.

The Library does not, generally, accept material where we already have copies in the collection. Please check the Catalogue (for published materials) and the Manuscripts, oral history & pictures catalogue (for original materials) prior to offering material.

The Library does not, generally, accept the following material:

  • duplicates of materials already held in the collection
  • textbooks and technical material not originating in New South Wales
  • theses and dissertations
  • self-published material not originating in New South Wales
  • non-Australian fiction
  • objects (flags, clothing, cloth, jewellery, instruments etc)
  • copies of original materials (manuscripts, pictures) or publications
  • government records
  • materials that are still required for ongoing use (for example, current business archives)
  • material that is more suitably placed with another collecting institution

offers of donation

Published material

If you wish to offer published material for donation, please print and sign the Collection Donations Declaration (60KB PDF) and include it with the material. If you wish to offer a large number of published items, or rare or exceptional published material, please contact Collection Strategy & Development using our online donations enquiry form before sending material to the Library. Please provide as much information as possible about the material.

Materials accompanied with the above form can be given in-person or sent to:

Collection Strategy & Development, Donations
State Library of New South Wales
Macquarie Street
Sydney 2000

All material is reviewed against the criteria listed above, and material that is accepted for the collection will appear in the Catalogue.

Material not required for the collection may be discarded or passed on to another library. The Library does not acknowledge all donations although your generosity is greatly appreciated.

Original materials

If you wish to offer original materials (for example, pictures, photographs, maps and manuscripts) for donation please contact us through our online donations enquiry form. Please provide as much information as possible as that will assist the Library to assess the material.

Items that are accepted for the collection will be recorded in the Manuscripts, oral history & pictures catalogue

If you have a query about donations or wish to enquire regarding the status of your query please use the online donations enquiry form.

Thank you for considering the collections of the State Library of New South Wales.

Quick Links

The State Library provides a free Information Request Service.

Macquarie St, Sydney
NSW 2000, Australia
Tel: (02) 9273 1414

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