Upper Midwest Jewish Archives
Contribute to the Upper Midwest Jewish Archives
Help us continue to preserve the history of Jewish communities in the Upper Midwest; consider a financial donation to the Upper Midwest Jewish Archives.
The Upper Midwest Jewish Archives welcomes inquiries about donating materials related to the Jewish communities of the region. We encourage requests from individuals, organizations, and businesses to assess the historical and research value of records in collections. We work collaboratively with other archival repositories; if a collection appears more properly suited for another archival collection or institution, we can assist in pointing you to a collection that would be a better fit.
Types of Materials in the Collection The materials collected and sought include, but are not limited to: personal papers and records of individuals; records of organizations, businesses, movements, and religious groups; oral history interviews; photographs and multimedia, digital or non-digital; and print materials and books that have historical value.
Scope of Collecting The collection aims to collect materials related to the Jewish community, regardless of sect of Judaism. Materials should have a connection to the Upper Midwest region – mainly categorized as Minnesota and North and South Dakota – whether the materials were created in the region or document an organization or individual who eventually resided within the region. Varied formats of materials are acceptable, including electronic records. While the collection is mostly comprised of English language materials, there are some Hebrew, Yiddish, and German materials; no collection will be refused based solely upon language. The archives do not purchase or bid on collections. We do not collect three-dimensional materials or artifacts. The archives staff is responsible for reviewing and selecting materials to be collected as well as identifying those materials that are out of scope.
How materials are donated If you are interested in donating materials to the Upper Midwest Jewish Archives, please contact the archivist to discuss the materials. The collection will be evaluated by the archivist to determine whether or not it adheres to our collecting policy and cope of collecting. The collection will be assessed by the archivist in conjunction with the Archives and Special Collections Acquisitions Committee to determine if the collection may be accepted by the University. Collections are legally deeded to the Upper Midwest Jewish Archives at the University of Minnesota by means of a deed of gift. This signed agreement functions to clarify the property, copyright, disposition, and access rights to the collection. While the property is transferred to the University, the copyright remains with the creator unless the donor chooses to transfer copyright; if researchers aim to quote material at lengths longer than fair use laws permit, it is the responsibility of the researcher to contact the copyright owner for permissions. Disposition rights allow the archivists to remove from the collection any materials that do not fall within the scope of collecting; these materials can either be destroyed or returned to the owner at the time of processing, in accordance with the donor’s wishes. The deed of gift allows us to administer access to the materials as well. While the archives are open to the public, access is controlled. If at the time of donation the donor feels materials should be restricted, arrangements can be arranged upon signing the deed of gift and reasonable restrictions will be determined by working with the archives staff; however, we strongly encourage open access to materials in the interest of researchers.
Tax deductions Donations may be tax deductible, however archive staff cannot appraise donations for tax purposes; the IRS regulations prohibit the receiving repository from setting a value for a collection. You may work with an appraiser before donating the materials to the archives, but keep in mind that appraisers will be evaluating the fair market value of the materials, and high research value may not translate into a high market price. Additional financial contributions are always welcome and can be used to support the purchase of archival supplies needed to house the collection, project staff to process the collection, special initiatives such as digitization projects, or an annual gift to the endowment to offset the cost of long term care of the collection.
How materials are cared for Materials in the collection are housed in a secure, climate-controlled storage facility at the University of Minnesota. Collections are re-housed and organized into a logical order. Preparation of a detailed inventory is completed to allow researchers to find the collection; a finding aid is created and disseminated online. The acquisition of the collection may be publicized within the University. Please note that the organization of new collections takes time.