Donation Guidelines

The library receives thousands of donations of print and non-print materials each year. Donated items that fill a need in the collection are added. However, most go directly to the book sale. We have learned from long experience what sells and what doesn’t. We have to be selective because of storage limitations and the labor involved in sorting so many items.

We are happy to provide written acknowledgment for all gifts, but we lack the expertise to appraise the value. Please contact Library Director Kelly Linehan if you have any questions about donations that are not covered by these guidelines.

Thank-you for your generosity to the Friends of the Waltham Public Library!

Publication dates and condition are important.
The library accepts books published in the last 10 years in good to excellent condition. That means the hardback books should have covers, no underlining and not be musty or dirty. Quality collections of books older than 10 years may be accepted with approval of the Library Director.

  1. Paperbacks
    Paperbacks must not be yellowed or have cracked spines (many dry out within ten years if stored improperly). Paperbacks must have covers.
  2. Bring your Magazines to the Magazine Swap
    No magazines will be accepted as donations to the library. Exceptions can only be made with the personal approval of the Director. We have stopped taking National Geographic and other heavily pictorial magazines because they do not sell. You can donate any old magazines to the magazine swap located in the AV Annex, next to the on-going book sale shelf.
  3. Encyclopedia and Reference Sets
    Encyclopedia and Reference Sets older than 10 years will not be accepted. Incomplete reference sets of any age will not be accepted.
  4. CDs and DVDs
    Compact discs, DVDs and videos in good condition or better, regardless of age, will be accepted as long as they are in their original packaging. We cannot accept black box or no-box videos and DVDs. Vinyl records will only be accepted with approval of the Director.
  5. No Artifacts
    Artifacts cannot be accepted without the Director’s approval. We cannot accept gifts of artwork, equipment, furniture, etc. except under very special circumstances.

The following are organizations that also accept book donations