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being the Society’s founding president, first recorded donor, and early legator through a generous bequest of important historical documents and artifacts.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

Online Event; Conversation

Jefferson: Then and Now

29Oct 5:30PM 2020
This is an online program

The reputations of all of the founders have changed dramatically over the course of American history, none more than that of Thomas Jefferson. Historians Annette Gordon ...

African American History Seminar; Online Event

Success to the Literary Society! Black Male Youth Organizing in Early Nineteenth-Century Boston

5Nov 5:15PM 2020
This is an online program

In 1841, a dozen or so African American male youth aged twelve to sixteen established the Young Men’s Literary Society in Boston with the stated aim to promote ...

Teacher Workshop

Legislating the Environment: Teaching Environmental History and Civics

7Nov 9:30AM 2020
$25 Registration Fee

In partnership with the Tsongas Industrial History Center, we will explore the intersections of environmental history, science, and engineering. Chad Montrie, Professor ...

From our Blog

This Week @MHS

Join us for a program this week! Here is a look at what is going on: - Tuesday, 29 January, 5:15 PM: Better Teaching through Technology, 1945-1969, with Victoria Cain, Northeastern ...

Founder to Founder

Like so many good stories here at the Historical Society, it began with a reference question. Jeremy Belknap, hunting through his sources, asked Vice President John Adams for some help. Belknap, the ...

Read more from our blog

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