In order to fulfill its mission of collecting Lawrence University and Milwaukee-Downer College history, the Lawrence University Archives depends upon donations of unique materials by the community.

If you believe that you have materials that support this mission, please contact the Archives about making a donation.

Why donate?

The Lawrence University Archives collects unique materials that document the history of Lawrence and Milwaukee-Downer College. Each collection in the Archives contributes to a broad, nuanced documentation of Lawrence as an institution and a community. Collections also serve as primary resources for teaching and research by Lawrence University students, faculty, staff, alumni, and members of the wider community. Donations to the Archives directly support these pursuits.

What to donate?

Collections of personal papers of faculty, staff, and alumni that document Lawrence people and events are a vital part of the Archives’ collections. The Archives is primarily interested in complete collections which fully document the life and work of individuals and organizations affiliated with Lawrence or Milwaukee-Downer, but will often accept single items as well. We cannot accept donations which are in poor condition (moldy, insect-ridden, or otherwise) unless they are of extraordinary intellectual value.

Materials of all formats may be considered for donation, including paper, audiovisual materials, electronic/digital records, photographs, and memorabilia.

For transferring University records, please refer to our guidance on Records Management.

From faculty

Materials that reflect your time at Lawrence/Milwaukee-Downer including correspondence, memoirs and reminiscences, diaries, scrapbooks and photo albums, professional papers, syllabi and course materials, speeches and lectures, photographs, and audiovisual materials.

From alumni/students

Materials that reflect your time at Lawrence/Milwaukee-Downer including correspondence, memoirs and reminiscences, diaries, scrapbooks and photo albums, photographs, and audiovisual materials.

From student organizations

Tell the story of the organization through founding documents, meeting minutes and agendas, publications (like newsletters), membership lists, correspondence, organizational histories or annual reports, posters and promotional materials, scrapbooks, and photographs.

How to make a donation

If you are considering a donation, please contact the archivist. Once the details of a donation are agreed upon, both parties sign a deed of gift. This deed transfers ownership of the records to the University and ensures that we are able to make materials available to researchers. Please note that the Archives cannot provide monetary appraisal of any donated items.

Materials not collected

Donations may be refused under the following circumstances:

  1. Materials that are outside the scope of our collecting priorities
  2. Materials that are in such poor condition as to be unusable
  3. Photocopies of documents from other repositories
  4. Duplicates of current holdings (unless in better condition than the Archives’ copy)
  5. Student records protected by the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act

Resources for Care of Personal Collections

Collections Care, from the Library of Congress Preservation Directorate

Preserving Your Family Treasures, from the Library of Congress Preservation Directorate

How to Preserve Family Papers and Photographs, from the National Archives (U.S.)

Personal Archiving: Preserving Your Digital Memories, from the Library of Congress National Digital Information Infrastructure and Preservation Program