Donate an Object

We want to develop our collections and are very grateful for all offers of objects, boats and memorabilia.  If you’d like to donate an object to us, please send an email to the Collections Team outlining the following details:

  • What object(s) you would like to donate
  • What it is
  • How you came to own the object
  • Any known history
  • Photo

Donations are considered in the light of established collecting areas, suitability in terms of being able to house and care for objects, and against our current objects.  Sadly we cannot accept everything we are offered as we do not have the necessary storage space and like to limit our collections to specific areas.  If the decision is made to accept your offer of a donation, we will contact you regarding the next steps to be taken.

Frequently Asked Questions for donation of objects

What if I want to lend an object to the New Zealand Maritime Museum?
We prefer not to accept material on loan, only to have it housed in our Collection store indefinitely.  However, we do source loans of material for the Collection specifically for exhibition purposes.  We encourage you to send us details about the objects you would interested in loaning to us so that we may contact you in the event that we may review our current exhibitions, or undertake the development of a new display.  Alternatively, you may wish to consider donating your object.

Will my object be on display?
The value of collections lies in display, reference and research.  Unfortunately, not all of our collections items can be on display at any one time, while some are too fragile for long-term display.  We also cannot guarantee to display all new gifts immediately as we have a large collection and not enough room to display it all at the same time.  We will of course try to show new items at some point in the future.

Why collect objects if they are not going to be on display?
When not on display, the objects are carefully stored.  The items on display are used for research and educational purposes.  They provide important information to museum staff when preparing exhibitions and with research enquiries from scholars and the public.

Can I view items that are not displayed?
If you would like to examine objects in the collections, we need to write or call ahead of time to ensure that staff are available to help you and the items you wish to view can be retrieved from storage.