Nationally Recognized Collection

The Wright Museum is well-known for its exceptional collection of authentic objects originating from the WWII era (1939-45). The Museum houses a wide variety of artifacts, including: photographs, films, correspondence, audio recordings, insignia, uniforms, documents, books, works of art, toys, household items, military equipment, vehicles, and other objects.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Please browse through the FAQs below if you are considering donating an artifact to the Museum.

The Wright Museum focuses primarily on the WWII-era (1939-45). In order to highlight the enterprise and courage of Americans on both the Home Front and War Front, the museum generally collects artifacts produced by, used by, or detailing the contributions of Americans during the war.

The museum houses a wide variety of artifacts, including: photographs, films, correspondence, audio recordings, insignia, uniforms, documents, books, works of art, toys, household items, military equipment, vehicles, and other objects.

The museum is interested in collecting unique items from the war front and home front, including original journals/letters/photographs, ephemera, trench art, original period artwork, home front items, toys, unique military equipment, etc.

Due to storage constraints, upkeep demands, and existing examples in the collection, we are generally not accepting the following items at this time: uniforms (dress uniforms, overcoats, etc., with the exception of certain women’s uniforms and other accessories), canvas backpacks, seabags, footlockers, magazines/newspapers, models, cots, large furniture/appliances, film reels, large radios, and generators. These items may be reviewed on a case by case basis if they are part of a larger collection – please use the donation form for more info.

The museum generally does not accept artifacts from other countries into the Permanent Collection, though certain items may be considered on a case by case basis.

Because our mission focuses on World War II, we do not accept artifacts from other wars or periods of history into the Permanent Collection.

Please be aware that the museum will not appraise artifacts for you. If you need an appraisal, please contact a certified appraiser in your area for assistance. If you are in New England, you can contact the New England Appraiser’s Association at or (901)758-2659 to find a certified appraiser.

A: The museum houses a significant collection of decommissioned military equipment. However, for the safety of our staff and visitors, we do not accept ammunition of any kind.

We are unable to accept walk-in donations due to limited curatorial staffing. The museum requests that you contact a staff member ahead of time to set up an appointment. The most effective way to contact our curatorial staff is by using the form below.

The Temporary Custody Receipt allows the museum to temporarily hold your artifacts(s) for review by the Collections Committee. Once our Committee has reviewed the item(s), you will receive written notification of which of them have been accepted into the museum’s Permanent Collection. Those that are accepted will be listed on an enclosed Deed of Gift form, which you will then be asked to sign and return. The Deed of Gift form legally transfers ownership of the item(s) to the Wright Museum. Items that are not accepted will be handled in the manner you indicated on the Temporary Custody Receipt.

We cannot guarantee how or when any particular artifact will be exhibited. However, once it has been accepted and processed into our collection, an object becomes available to staff, interns, students and researchers. Your donation thus expands the amount of World War II knowledge available, even though it may not be on display.

To preserve unique artifacts and provide new learning experiences for our visitors, we are continually updating exhibits and rotating the artifacts in our displays. When an artifact is taken off of display, it is carefully recorded and placed into our secure collections storage area. Donors may request an appointment to view donated artifacts that are not on public display between May and October. Please note that requests must be made a minimum of 30 days in advance and that, even with advance notice, we may not be able to accommodate every request. 

In addition to the main Permanent Collection, the museum also houses an Education Collection and a Research Library. The Education Collection is made directly accessible to students, and is generally composed of reproduction, duplicate, or poor condition objects that are of particular value for hands-on learning under the careful supervision of Museum staff and volunteers. The Research Library is composed of books, manuscripts and media about World War II that are not of WWII-era origin (i.e. published 1946-present day). Items not accepted for the Permanent Collection may still be accepted for the Education Collection or Research Library.

Collection items are sometimes lent to other educational institutions as part of traveling exhibits or for temporary artifact exchanges.

While the museum cannot accept every potential artifact donation, our staff carefully reviews each donation with our collections criteria in mind.