parts of bronze bow and arrow in wooden crate
Bow and arrow from Diana by Augustus Saint-Gaudens in crate

©Ian Manseau

The museum collection at Saint-Gaudens National Historical Park contains over 60,000 items that relate to the life and work of Augustus Saint-Gaudens and the Cornish Colony. Museum artifacts range in size from delicate cameos to heroic-size public monuments. Many of these items came to the park through the Saint-Gaudens Memorial, when the park was established in the 1960s. Over the years, donors have provided additional artifacts to enhance the museum collections.

For more information about the Saint-Gaudens NHP museum collection, contact the curator at


Frequently Asked Questions

The park collections and archival materials may be used by appointment only. Researchers must make an appointment with the museum curator at least 48 hours in advance. Researchers will be required to register and will be required to abide by the Researcher Access Policy. Additional information regarding permission to publish or obtaining copies will be furnished as needed.

The Augustus Saint-Gaudens papers are at the Rauner Library, Dartmouth College, Hanover, N.H. and can be reached at (603) 646-0538.

The park is unable to offer authentication or appraisal services. National Park Service staff cannot provide monetary appraisals. If you need to obtain an appraisal, you may want to start on the website of the American Society of Appraisers.

The park accepts items that relate to the site and contribute directly to the understanding of the purpose, themes, and resource of the park. The Scope of Collection Statement defines areas of collecting. Please contact the museum curator by email for current criteria as this document is evaluated on a routine basis.

The park may accept donations when objects fit into one of the Scope of Collections categories and storage space exists. Additionally, the donor must have the item's full legal title.

Great! Before bringing or mailing item(s) to the park, there are a few steps you’ll need to take. The first step is to contact the museum curator. Include photographs, background information (such as provenance), and measurements of the item(s).

All potential donations are reviewed by the park’s Collections Advisory Committee. The team meets regularly to evaluate potential donations against the Scope of Collections Statement and make a recommendation to the park’s superintendent, who will make a final decision. After final approval by the superintendent, the museum curator will work with the donor to transfer the donation to the park. Donors must sign paperwork, transferring ownership of the item(s) to the National Park Service.

Not all items can be accepted into the park’s collection. When this happens, the museum curator may recommend other museums or collecting institutions that may be a good home for the item(s).

Artifacts and archives in the Saint-Gaudens NHP’s museum collection are used in many different ways.

The collection is available to researchers by request and used by park staff to develop public programs interpreting the history of the site. Staff at the national park also create museum exhibits using artifacts from the museum collection, write articles featuring items in the collection, and share them on digital platforms.

The National Park Service is dedicated to preserving the collection for this and future generations. The Cultural Resources team is committed to the highest level of care for all the artifacts in the collection. While it can sometimes be bittersweet to part from treasured heirlooms, even when they are safely located in a museum, donors and their friends and family may wish to schedule a time with our curators to view donated artifacts in our Curatorial Storage Facility.

The creator of an artwork, photograph, etc., is the copyright holder. Purchasing a piece of art does not transfer copyright to the purchaser unless explicitly stated in documentation.

The National Park Service encourages the transfer of copyright with all donations. The Deed of Gift form addresses copyright issues. Although retaining copyright does not automatically prevent a donation to the park, the copyright status of every piece must be documented. If you are the copyright holder you may transfer copyright to the National Park Service or provide limited rights (which must be specified at the time of donation). If you are not the copyright holder, you may still donate an item, but you must make it clear that you do not hold copyright for the item and that it is not being transferred with the artwork.

Leaving objects or artifacts at the park is strongly discouraged. If you or a designated representative leaves the item(s) at the park, you do so at your own risk! You will be provided with a receipt showing that the item was left at the park, and you must complete a Statement of Ownership form so that we may contact you once your donation has been evaluated. Leaving an object(s) at the park does not guarantee that it will be permanently retained by the park. If you are interested in making a donation, please start by contacting the museum curator.

We wish that every artifacts could be on display for the public to see! With such an extensive selection of art and artifacts, not everything fits in our exhibit spaces. Also in consideration of the preservation needs of fragile artifacts, some museum collections pieces are stored in our climate-controlled Curatorial Storage Facility.

However, there are many other ways that collections not currently on view at the park are shared with the public:
  • Art and artifacts from the museum collection are sometimes borrowed by other museums for exhibition.
  • Artifacts are often shared on the park's digital platforms.
  • Images of artifacts are used by park rangers in public programs or as part of a larger exhibit.
  • Curatorial staff may bring out specific artifacts for special tours or public programs.

Sensitive artwork or artifacts are generally not placed on permanent exhibit, but periodically allowed time to "rest" in storage to reduce the stresses of being on exhibit. Light is especially damaging, and its effects are permanent and irreversible. While not exciting, proper storage is a very important part of keeping an artifact in good condition so that it can be on display in the future.

All donor information is kept confidential, to the fullest extent of the law. However, donors will have a chance to let us know how they would like to be credited when an object is on view. Credit lines should be a short, unobtrusive statement such as "Gift of the J.H. Smith Family."

Yes! All donations to the National Park Service are tax deductible to the extent permitted by law. For a donation to be tax deductible, the donor is responsible for:
  • Establishing the value of the gift for tax deduction purposes (see FAQ #2)
  • Meeting Internal Revenue Service reporting requirements
  • Completing a Noncash Charitable Contributions Form (IRS Form 8283)
  • Providing appraisal information for items that total over $5,000

Loaned objects are accepted on a case-by-case basis for research and exhibit purposes. Long term incoming loans must also be evaluated by the Collections Advisory Committee, in the process described above. We do not accept indefinite loans of objects. Contact the museum curator for more information about loaning an object.

Last updated: February 16, 2024

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139 Saint Gaudens Road
Cornish, NH 03745



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