Donate Materials

Material should be transferred in the order which the creator maintained it.  A transmittal form briefly identifying the material and describing the activity and ALA Unit to which it relates should accompany the shipment. Please contact the Archives before sending out materials.

Detailed instructions on depositing records to the ALA Archives can be found here: Accessioning to the ALA Archives

Transmittal Form

Transmittal Form – Example

Items to be transferred include:

  • Official records: constitutions, by-laws, minutes, transcripts, rosters, etc.
  • Office files: correspondence, memoranda, and subject files concerning office activities
  • Historical files documenting policies, decisions, committee reports, questionnaires, events, speeches
  • Publications: one record copy of all programs, journals, monographs, newsletters, brochures, posters and announcements
  • Audio-visuals: photographs, sound recordings, films, and videos
  • Personal papers of members which relate directly to association work; for personal papers not directly related to ALA work, please consult the Archives prior to transfer
  • Charts and maps

Records that should not be transferred include:

  • Records of specific financial and membership transactions
  • Letters of transmittal where the date and routing information is on the document transmitted
  • Requests for publications or information after the requests have been filled
  • All blank forms and unused printed or duplicated materials
  • All duplicate material: keep only the original copy and annotated copies
  • Papers, reports, work papers and drafts of published materials
  • Replies to questionnaires if the results are recorded and preserved in the archives or a published report


  • Because of the limited ability to care for artifacts, please consult the Archives prior to transfer. This includes tote bags, shirts, and other non-paper based promotional items.

These criteria are intended as a general guide. If there are questions about the retention or disposal of specific records, please contact the ALA Archives at (217) 333-7841.

Materials should be sent to:

ALA Archives
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
1707 South Orchard Street
Urbana, IL 61801
Phone: (217) 333-7841

Staff Resources | Log in