Library Donation Policy

Library Donation Policy 

In order to support the research of its members and other family history researchers, the San Mateo County Genealogical Society (SMCGS) will accept donations of materials from individuals and organizations which aid in that purpose. Organizations considering a donation should contact the Library Manager. Guidelines for donations from individuals follow. 

Generally acceptable materials include books, periodicals, maps, legal documents, directories, and the like; SMCGS will not accept research notes, manuscripts, or historical material of a general nature readily available in public libraries. The Society reserves the right to decline to accept any materials. 

Upon acceptance by SMCGS, all donated materials become the property of the Society, to be used for any purpose deemed appropriate, including integration into existing collections, storage, transfer to another organization, sale or other disposal. Due to limited shelf space not all donations may be added to our Library collection. SMCGS may elect to sell donated materials at our Seminar book sales, the proceeds of which go to support our Library. Donors will receive an itemized receipt and a letter of acknowledgment. 

SMCGS assumes no liability for materials deposited at the SMCGS Genealogy Library without its prior knowledge or approval; such material will be deemed abandoned and may be disposed of by SMCGS at its discretion. Individuals desiring to donate materials are encouraged to contact the Library Manager to make arrangements. 

Particularly desired donations: 

  • San Mateo or San Francisco County family genealogies or family histories 
  • County histories with biographical sketches 
  • Indexes to or abstracts of vital records, newspapers and genealogical periodicals 
  • Copies or transcriptions of original local records (deeds, wills, court actions, etc.)

SMCGS cannot accept the following materials: 

  • Biographies of famous persons 
  • General histories 
  • “Who’s Who” type publications 
  • Works of fiction 
  • Boxes of genealogically related materials in no apparent order 
  • Unorganized family records or artifacts