The library accepts gifts that are given without conditions, including the condition
that they be maintained as a separate collection. A gift generally will have a book
plate affixed to acknowledge the donation.
Gift materials are evaluated according to the same criteria as is used for purchase.
The final decision on whether an item is to be added to the library's collections rests
with the Director.
Gifts are given a preliminary sorting to determine which books are obviously of no
interest to the library by reason of age, condition, content, etc. Items not to be
retained are sold at modest prices or otherwise disposed of. Books which are potentially
usable are systematically checked against the collection. If already owned by the
library, the gift and the library's copy are compared as to edition, condition, etc., and
if a substitution is warranted, the gift copy becomes a replacement. Similarly,
periodicals given to the library are checked against the library's holdings. Gifts are
used to replace worn copies and missing issues or to fill in gaps in the library's
Materials not generally added include self-published materials and items published by
vanity presses. Exceptions can be made when the publication's subject matter meets these
collection development guidelines and its quality is evident.
The library reserves the right to dispose of items that are not useful, usually by
sale at modest prices, sometimes by gift to a department, to a faculty member (according
to specialty), or to another institution. If there are no further uses, the item may be
contributed for recycling.
The library does not routinely notify or return to donors' gift materials that are
not added to the collections. With advance notice, reasonable requests will be
accommodated when possible.