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Ways to Donate

Unrestricted Gifts

Unrestricted gifts are among the most valuable to the History Center, because they allow the organization to allocate funds where the greatest need arises or to take advantage of unique opportunities. Your unrestricted contribution may be used to support costs associated with innovative programming, materials for exhibitions, research, facilities and more.

Directed Gifts

Directed gifts allow you to designate your gift to a department or priority project within the History Center. When you make a directed gift to the History Center, you enjoy the satisfaction of knowing you are supporting a program that is personally meaningful.

Endowment Gifts

Endowment gifts provide the option of designating your gift for general or restricted endowment providing the York County History Center with long term financial support by expanding the permanent financial base. Project Endowment Funds may be started for specific purposes with a minimum contribution of $10,000.

Outright Gifts

When you make an outright gift to the York County History Center, your contribution will be put to work immediately.

Outrights gifts include:

  • Cash gifts — The easiest gifts can be made through credit/debit card transactions, outright cash, or personal checks, cashier’s checks, or money orders made payable to the York County History Center.
  • Gifts of appreciated securities, stocks, and bonds — These gifts provide considerable tax advantages when transferred to the History Center before they are sold. To transfer stock contributions please contact the Development Office at (717) 848-1587.
  • Gifts of personal property — Contributions of rare books, works of art, valuable collectibles, and tangible items of demonstrable value are important for the History Center’s mission to collect and share York County history. In some cases, these gifts may enable you to make a significant gift to support the York County History Center with outstanding tax benefits to you.

Donation to the Collections

The York County History Center has benefited from the generosity of others for many years. Donations of artifacts such as furniture, paintings, glassware, clothing, machinery and other objects have been given to the Collections Department. Donations of ephemera such as maps, manuscripts, photographs and books have been given to the Library & Archives. It is these gifts that help keep our collections current and growing. This allows us to fulfill our mission of collecting and preserving the history of the area and inspiring people to explore the wonderful history and culture of York County Pennsylvania.

To make a library donation, please contact Lila Fourhman-Shaull, Director of Library & Archives. For more information about donating and item to our collection, please contact Meegan Carr, Director of Collections.

Memorial & Tribute Gifts

A Memorial or Tribute gift to the York County History Center is a special way to remember someone who had an interest in history or heritage, or to honor someone who is marking a special occasion or accomplishment in his or her life such as a birthday or a graduation.

Making a Memorial or Tribute gift is a unique and touching way to honor someone special in your life. Your Memorial or Tribute gift creates a special remembrance while helping the History Center continue to collect, preserve and share history for future generations to enjoy.

Memorial or Tribute gifts can be made by mail to York County History Center, 250 E. Market Street, York, PA 17403, or you may contact David Corman at 717-848-1587, ext. 232.

Planned Gifts*


The simplest way to support the York County History Center’s future, a bequest provides a gift for the organization in your will. Possible wording for a general bequest is as follows:

General Bequest — “I leave the sum of __ (dollars or percent) to the York County History Center.”

Residuary Bequest — “I give to (legal name of charity*) the rest, residue and remainder of my estate to be used for its exempt purposes.”

Contingent Bequest — “If (name of beneficiary) predeceases me or disclaims, I give such property to (legal name of charity*) to be used for its exempt purposes.”

Charitable Gift Annuities

A Charitable Gift Annuity provides you with an income for life in exchange for transferring assets to the York County History Center. It involves a simple agreement whereby the History Center accepts a gift of cash, securities, or property and agrees to pay a specified, fixed dollar amount to you or another beneficiary.

Charitable Remainder Trusts

The Charitable Remainder Trust allows you to transfer assets into a trust which then pays lifetime income to you or your beneficiaries. The remainder of these assets will transfer to the York County History Center. There are two types of charitable remainder trusts:

Annuity Trust — you (the donor) receive a fixed income. No additional contributions may be made to the trust.

Unitrust — this type is flexible in that you (the donor) may make additional contributions to the trust and the payments to you may vary.

Charitable Lead Trusts

A Lead Trust involves an agreement between you (the donor) and a trustee that provides income to the York County History Center for a specified number of years. At the end of that period the trust property typically passes to an heir. Securities or other appreciated assets may be contributed to establish a charitable lead trust.

Gifts of Real Estate

Property gifts of personal residences, second homes, income property and vacant land can bring benefits to the History Center. These offer a wide variety of tax and other benefits. Any property gift must be reviewed in details prior to consideration. At times it is not practical for the History Center to accept real estate gifts.

Retirement Assets

Retirement accounts assets, if left to anyone other than a spouse, may be subject to high taxes. By designating the York County History Center as the recipient of any benefits remaining in your retirement plan, you may reduce the taxes on those assets.

Life Insurance

You may wish to make the York County History Center a beneficiary of an insurance policy.

An easy method to increase your contribution is through your company’s. These programs typically match all or part of an employee’s donation to a charitable organization. Contact your personnel office to obtain further information about matching gifts.

Gift Pledges

The York County History Center welcomes gift pledges. A pledge is a formal statement of intention to make a gift to the History Center. These allow you to complete your gift by making regular payments over time such as several months or quarterly, allowing you to give more generously than you originally may have considered. Each payment on your pledge is eligible for an income-tax charitable deduction.

IRA Gifts

Congress has extended legislation that allows donors to make tax-free gifts from their IRA Accounts. If you are age 70 or older and do not need all or a part of the distributions from your IRA you can make tax-free gifts totaling up to $100,000 from your traditional or Roth IRA to qualified charities. If you and your spouse each have an IRA account, you can each make up to $100,000 in gifts. While you cannot claim a charitable deduction for IRA gifts, you will not be required to pay income tax on any amounts you distribute to qualified charities. Contact your tax advisor for further information. For questions, please contact Terri Altland, Director of Development