Frequently Asked Questions

Can you make copies of my materials or do you need the originals?

We prefer original materials whenever possible. American University Library does not, as a matter of policy, photocopy or digitize entire collections for donors. Donors are welcome to undertake this work themselves prior to donating their collection to the Archive or to consult Archive staff as to whether digital surrogates are an acceptable substitute for the originals.

Do you want the letter, the envelope, everything?

Envelopes often provide helpful context such as address and postmark date so we recommend including them.

Can I submit my digital material?

Born-digital materials are most welcome. Please consult the archives staff about preferred file formats. Digital materials should be sent on CD-RW or USB Flash Drive. Inquiries are welcome about alternate methods. When copying your files, please ensure that materials you are submitting are not read only so we can ensure their long term preservation.

Do I need to have permission from the Peace Corps or from any host-country organizations whose materials I want to donate?

You may donate items if they were purchased or given to you. In certain instances, you can only transfer title but not copyright. This is dependent on the nature of the organization and whether the items are in the public domain or not. For example, government documents are often in the public domain and may be freely distributed. If you have questions about the status of items in your collection, please consult Archives staff.

Is the Archive officially associated with the Peace Corps or the NPCA?

The PCCA is an independent archive housed at the American University Library. The National Archives holds the records of the Peace Corps. American University is the official archive for the National Peace Corps Association.

What happens to material once I submit it?

American University Library offers an environmentally controlled, secure physical and digital storage space for your collection. Our trained staff will oversee your materials proper handling and use including rehousing and reformatting materials as needed.

Who will be able to access the materials?

AU Archives and Special Collections is open to the AU community and the general public. Any one is welcome to view our collections. Donors with concerns about third-party privacy are encouraged to establish access restrictions in consultation with Archives staff.

Can I access them later to see my things again if I want to?

Donors are welcome to visit the Archives and see their materials during regular business hours.

Is any of this tax deductible?

Gifts to American University Library are tax-deductible under Section 170(c) of the U.S. Internal Revenue Code, in accordance with IRS regulations. American University Library provides written acknowledgment of all charitable donations. American University Library does not, as a matter of policy, offer monetary evaluations.

Can I include the Archive in my estate plan to receive my collection after my death?

Donors are welcome to include PCCA in their estate plan. If you decide to make a bequest, you should specify what materials you would like donated. It would be most helpful if you notified the Archives of your intention to do this.

Can I see what’s in the collection now?

All of the collections in the PCCA are open for research.

What do you already have?

To learn more about our holdings, please consult our online catalog.