Research & Collections
Decorative Arts
Fine Arts
Collection Basics
Building Collections
Mr. Small's Quilts
Caring for Collections
Studying Collections
People at the Museum
Activities & Resources
Teacher Orientation
      Before objects are added to the Museum's collections they are carefully evaluated to see if they are appropriate. Curators who are knowledgeable about the object(s) in question review the objects. 
To be considered appropriate for our collections, an object:
  • must fit with the mission and goals of the Museum
  • should have a potential use for research, exhibition, or education.
  • must have artistic, historical, or scientific value
  • must have accompanying background information (provenance)
  • cannot be a potential hazard to people, the Museum building, or other collections. 
Before deciding to accept an object, the Museum must also consider:
  • any moral, ethical, or legal issues (making sure the object is not stolen property, for example)
  • the object's physical condition and its conservation needs
  • any related expenses (such as transportation, restoration, and storage)
  • whether the Museum can provide the proper storage, protection, and preservation for that object
  • copyright or other restrictions on use of the object. 

Curators, registrars, and other museum staff must keep lots of records for every object that becomes part of the Museum's collections. Once the object is accepted into the collections, the Museum cares for it and decides how it will be used. 

See Donation of an Object: Mr. Small's Quilts, as an example of the donation process.


Behind the Scenes Art Native Americans Forest Prairie Site Index Home
Contact Us

Copyright© 2000 Illinois State Museum Society