The Valentine does community-centered collecting that represents the deeply diverse history of the Richmond region. Once accepted, donations become part of our accessioned or non-accessioned collections and may be used in exhibitions, programs and research.
The Valentine cannot accept all objects. Determining factors include the object’s physical condition, the number of similar objects already in the collection, its rarity or uniqueness and the object’s unique history.
Collecting Scope and Criteria
Artifacts are selected for the collection based on the following criteria:
Donations are an essential way that the Valentine grows its collection to document all parts of Richmond’s history. Objects that are offered for donation are first placed with the museum for review. Following acceptance, final ownership transfer paperwork is sent to donors. In order to assist our careful review of materials you wish to donate, please fill our Donate an Object form as completely as possible.
If you are not able to complete this form online, please call the Valentine (804) 649-0711 to speak with a member of our curatorial team.
Please do not send materials or bring materials to the museum unless you have had prior communication with our curatorial staff.
Since 2019, the Valentine has been reviewing its collection to identify objects that do not support its mission. Like many collecting institutions, over our history the museum’s collecting practices evolved and our holdings became unfocused. Following a Board and staff collaborative process to redefine our priorities and create a Collection Philosophy, the museum is removing, or deaccessioning, objects that do not relate to the Richmond region, are duplicative, are in poor condition, or have low exhibition, programming or research value.
To learn more about this process, contact Meg Hughes, Deputy Director of Collections, at 804-649-0711 x308 or firstname.lastname@example.org.