Planned Gifts and Bequests

There are a number of planned giving options that can help you realize your own philanthropic goals while ensuring the future financial stability of the Massachusetts Historical Society. The benefits of making a planned gift may range from a steady stream of life income to a charitable income tax deduction and lower capital gains, estate, and other taxes.

Bequests

A bequest is a gift made through a will or trust and is an easy, practical way to make a meaningful financial contribution to the Society without affecting your current finances. A bequest may be made for a specific dollar amount or piece of property, for a percentage of your estate, or for part or all of what remains of the estate after other bequests are carried out.

Charitable Gift Annuity

Establishing a gift annuity with the MHS is a way to receive income for life as well as potential tax benefits—such as a federal income tax charitable deduction, annuity payments which are partially tax-free, and future estate tax savings—while supporting the Society's mission. 

Other Planned Giving Assets and Vehicles

The MHS offers a wide range of planned giving options —charitable remainder trusts, chartiable lead trusts, gifts of real estate or tangible personal property, and gifts from retirement plans or life insurance policies—that can be tailored to your needs and interests. For more information on how to make a planned gift to the MHS or to inform us of your existing plans that name the Society as a beneficiary, please contact the Development department at 617-646-0543 or development@masshist.org. Please note that the information above is not intended as legal advice, and you should consult with your attorney before making a planned gift.

James Sullivan Society

Since its founding in 1791, the MHS has benefited from a tradition of giving in Boston and beyond. The James Sullivan Society honors this legacy by recognizing those who have included the MHS in their long-term plans through bequests, life-income gifts, or other deferred-giving arrangements. 

The Hon. James Sullivan had the distinction of being the Society’s founding president, first recorded donor, and early legator through a generous bequest of important historical documents and artifacts. In addition to his service to the MHS, Sullivan was one of the first justices appointed to the Superior Court of Judicature and a governor of Massachusetts.

Members of the Sullivan Society continue the tradition of giving by naming the MHS as a beneficiary in their estate plans. Their gifts help the Society preserve our history for the scholars of tomorrow. In return, they are invited to special events and recognized in the Society’s Annual Report. To learn more about the Sullivan Society or to inform us that you have included the MHS in your estate plans, please contact the Development department at 617-646-0543 or development@masshist.org.

Upcoming Events

History of Women and Gender Seminar

Transgender History and Archives: An Interdisciplinary Conversation

18Dec 5:30PM 2018
Location: Knafel Center, Radcliffe Institute

This panel aims to begin an interdisciplinary conversation in transgender history. What is the state of the field of transgender studies in history, archiving, and public ...

MHS Tour

The History and Collections of the MHS

22Dec 10:00AM 2018

The History and Collections of the Massachusetts Historical Society Tour is a 90-minute docent-led walk through our public rooms. The tour is free, open to the public, ...

Early American History Seminar

The Consecration of Samuel Seabury and the Crisis of Atlantic Episcopacy, 1782-1807

8Jan 5:15PM 2019

Samuel Seabury’s consecration in 1784 signaled a transformation in the organization of American Protestantism. After more than a century of resistance to the office ...

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