Donations to Special Collections

The Detroit Public Library accepts donations of materials to the Burton Historical Collection, the E. Azalia Hackley Collection of African Americans in the Performing Arts, the Rare Book Collection, the Ernie Harwell Sports Collection and the National Automotive History Collection.

The staff of the Special Collections carefully considers all proposed donations to ensure that the materials fall within the scope of the particular collection.  If you wish to discuss a possible donation, please call (313) 481-1401 or email  For donations to the National Automotive History Collection, please call (313) 481-1862 or email  Please call or email in advance to inform us of the type and amount of material you are donating.

All donors must sign the gift receipt which transfers rights for the donated materials to the Detroit Public Library.  The Library will care for and make materials available to researchers according to professional archival standards.

The Detroit Public Library is a 501(c)6 non-profit organization.  If you wish to take a tax deduction for the value of the donation, please consult your accountant and/or tax attorney. 

According to federal law, the Library cannot make appraisals.  Archival appraisers are available in most metropolitan areas. The following persons or businesses have expressed a willingness to appraise books and manuscripts for those in the private sector.  The amount charged for this service is a matter negotiated between you and the individual appraiser.  The Detroit Public Library assumes no responsibility for the work of these professionals, but simply offers their names as a public service.

The relevant IRS forms and publications can be found here:

Form 8283, Noncash Charitable Contributions
Publication 561, Determining the Value of Donated Property
Publication 526, Charitable Contributions

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Resources for making career decisions, strategizing your job search, and finding job listings are available in the Technology, Literacy and Career (TLC) Center at the Main Library.

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