Membership fees and Proprietor assessments only cover 20% of the Athenæum’s operating costs. The institution depends on Annual Fund donors to help fund its everyday efforts to collect, preserve, and maintain the Athenæum's collections of books, manuscripts, and art. Unrestricted gifts to the Annual Fund support, among other things, these key operational areas:
Collections and Conservation
The institution acquires and maintains world-renowned collections of maps, manuscripts, rare books, art, and archival materials. Through these collections, the Athenæum serves and inspires a global community of scholars.
Reference and Reader Services
The Library’s dedicated team provides attentive and timely assistance with a wide variety of services, including interlibrary loan requests, navigation of the Athenæum’s vast circulating collection and electronic resources, and personalized research assistance.
Education and Events
Through exhibitions, curator-led gallery talks, symposia, research opportunities, and other educational programs, the Athenæum’s collections engage the intellectual curiosity of members and the public.
Maintenance and Infrastructure
The Athenæum’s landmark building provides twelve floors of beautiful space for reading, reflection, and open-stack browsing, in an environment that is maintained for the comfort of members and the stewardship of the collections.