Artifact Donations

We collect materials that reveal the character of life in Lake Forest and Lake Bluff from the period of early peoples to the present day.

Our wide-ranging collection includes: photographs; records and archives; maps, plats and blueprints; periodicals (including original bound volumes of the Lake Forester newspaper); a non-circulating library of books and research files; and three-dimensional objects.

Museum Collections

How to Donate An Artifact

Think of the History Center as a home for your story: a place for family photos, letters, architectural drawings, club archives and other items that chronicle life in Lake Forest and Lake Bluff. We collect both original artifacts and digital copies.

Your donation to the collection is tax deductible and it preserves the community’s history for future generations. Your treasures will be well cared for in our collections storage and made accessible for research and study.

If you have an object, archives or photographs you are interested in donating to the museum, please fill out the form below.

Thank you for considering us as a home for your history!

Our collections policy guides the types of items we accept. When considering a new donation, we ask:

  1. Is it relevant? Does it tell or provide context for a significant Lake Forest/Lake Bluff story?
  2. Is it unique? Do we already have a duplicate or similar item in our collection?
  3. Can we provide a proper storage environment?
  4. Is it in good condition for potential display or research use?
  5. Would it be a better fit at another historical institution?
  6. Can it be utilized for research purposes or for potential display on exhibit?

Museum Collection Submission Form

Maximum 2 files.
20 MB limit.
Allowed types: jpg, png.