All donations help support Australia's maritime heritage

Donate to the Australian Maritime Foundation and help the museum acquire important objects for all Australians and visitors to enjoy.

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  • Donations



    ACQUISITIONS ENDOWMENT - Donations for this priority will help the museum to conserve precious objects and add important new material to the National Maritime Collection.

    INDIGENOUS EDUCATION - The museum wants to employ an Indigenous educator to work with the community designing a new program to improve educational outcomes for Indigenous and non-Indigenous students across Australia.

    MIGRATION STORY - We are seeking financial support to refresh our migration exhibitions and collection, enhance engagement with Australian’s ethnic communities and upgrade our Welcome Wall. With your financial help we will be able to develop these wonderful assets and deliver revitalised projects throughout the museum over the next few years.

    MV KRAITMV Krait is currently undergoing an extensive $1 million restoration program to return it to its 1943 configuration. To donate towards the MV Krait Restoration Fund please use the form to the right of this page and enter MV Krait Restoration Fund in the Additional Comments section.

    About the Australian National Maritime Foundation

    The Australian National Maritime Foundation helps the Australian National Maritime Museum acquire important objects for all Australians and visitors to enjoy. It raises funds to support the National Maritime Collection and the museum generally.

    • The Foundation plays an important role in helping the museum acquire important heritage items that might otherwise disappear into a private collection or overseas. By donating funds, you can help boost our reserve, giving us the chance to quickly respond when rare opportunities arise.
    • Major expenditure decisions are made by Foundation Directors with the approval of the Council of the Museum.
    • All donations of $2 or more are tax-deductible.

    Find out more about how fundraising supports the museum.

    Chairman and Directors:

    • John Mullen (Chairman)
    • Peter Dexter
    • Kevin Sumption
    • Frank Shapter Secretary

    Contact us

    For further information, or to make a donation, please contact us:

    Phone: +61 2 9298 3777


  • Collection Donations

    Collection Donations

    Donating maritime heritage and cultural gifts to the National Maritime Collection is a fantastic way to contribute to Australia’s maritime history and make sure your piece is preserved into the future. Financial support, and support in kind, to help maintain the collection, is also welcome.

    Donate an Object

    Do you own a piece of Australian maritime heritage or maritime art? A painting, photograph, ship model or something unique? Some of the museum’s greatest treasures have come through the generosity of donors. To assess donation offers, we first require digital pictures of the object – preferably with a ruler visible to indicate scale. Then please tell us about the item:

    • What is the history of the object?
    • What stories surround the object or the people connected to it?
    • When, where and by whom was it made, owned or used?
    • What condition is it in?

    All donation offers are assessed by the museum’s Acquisition Committee on a case by case basis and it may take several months before a decision is made. Please do not post precious objects, documents or photographs. The museum holds no responsibility for items sent to us in the post.

    Send your pictures and object information to:

    The Australian National Maritime Foundation
    Phone: +61 2 9298 3777

    Make a Financial Donation

    Maintaining our collection is an ongoing process. Archaeology, restoration and conservation are a vital part of the museum’s work and many of the heritage treasures that come to us need repair.

    While we operate on government funding, we rely on additional revenue. We warmly welcome financial donations (tax deductible) to help us retrieve, conserve, maintain and display our growing collection. You can also donate to the Australian Maritime Foundation to help the museum buy important objects up for auction or at private sales.

    The Australian National Maritime Foundation
    Phone: +61 2 9298 3777

    Donate a Service

    We welcome enquiries from organisations and individuals offering specialist services that can help preserve our collection. This could include the donation of goods and services at no charge such as marine coatings and adhesives, or materials related to shipyard services and transport. Businesses can also get involved through Sponsorship or Corporate Membership.

    The Australian National Maritime Foundation
    Phone: +61 2 9298 3777

    Make a Donation Through Your Will

    The National Maritime Collection welcomes bequests such as part or all of your estate, or objects or collections which you presently enjoy. To understand the procedures and benefits of donating to the National Maritime Collection we invite you to contact us. We also suggest that you discuss your plans with family and your financial and legal advisors.

    The Australian National Maritime Foundation
    Phone: +61 2 9298 3777


  • Become a Friend of Endeavour

    Become a Friend of Endeavour

    The museum's replica of James Cook's HMB Endeavour continues to be a vital educational resource for both adults and children. Throughout the year, Endeavour sails to ports around Australia, allowing thousands of visitors to climb aboard and glimpse a sailor's life during Cook's epic 1768–71 world voyage.

    Students can also explore the iconic ship from their home or classroom. Using the latest camera technology from CSIRO, our education team are now able to take students on a virtual tour. Watch the video

    We need your help to support Endeavour's sailing and education programs. Any donation, large or small, can make a big difference.

    • $30 — provides a one-hour virtual tour for 10 students
    • $50 — 50 metres of rigging rope
    • $100 — 10 square metres of sail canvas
    • $120 — provides a teacher guide for a morning
    • $150 — essential safety equipment
    • $500 — standard wet weather gear for crew and passengers
    • $1,000 — critical navigation equipment

  • American Friends

    American Friends

    American citizens are invited to make financial or cultural artefact donations to the Australian National Maritime Museum through American Friends of the Museum. This program supports research, exhibitions and co-operative ventures that explore and develop maritime links between the USA and Australia.

    The American Friends of the Australian National Maritime Museum was established in the USA to garner American support for our museum which is home to a permanent exhibition and collection in the USA Gallery. This was funded as the USA Bicentennial Gift from the people of America to all Australians in 1988.

    The gallery hosts diverse exhibitions about maritime history, science, technology, art and design that connects the USA and Australia, and is a meeting place for trans-Pacific business networks.

    Make a Tax-Friendly Donation

    American Friends of the Museum warmly welcome donations of cash or artefacts from American citizens in support of the USA Gallery collection and programs. Based in the USA, American donors can gain tax benefits under Section 5501C3 of the USA Internal Revenue Service Code.

    More Information

    American Friends of the Australian National Maritime Museum
    c/ Baker & McKenzie
    1114 Avenue of the Americas
    New York, NY 10036-7703 USA


    USA Gallery Fellowship

    The Bill Lane USA Gallery Fellowship is open to scholars and museum professionals. It aims to foster professional relationships with key American cultural institutions in Australia and the USA, to contribute to USA Gallery interpretative and research programs, and to develop synergies between our National Maritime Collection and respective US collections.


  • Examples


    Some of the museum’s greatest treasures have come from generous donations from organisations or individuals. Financial support has also seen the preservation and acquisition of some incredible artefacts and projects. Here are some examples of donated objects and how donated funds have enhanced our collection.

    Ben Lexcen's Taipan Restored

    In 1959, a 23-year-old Ben Lexcen designed and built Taipan, a revolutionary lightweight 18-foot skiff that changed the shape of racing skiffs in Australia forever. Taipan had several owners before it was donated to the museum in 1986. Around 20 years later, the Australian sailing community pooled funds for the museum to research and restore this design masterpiece. Led by Lexcen's friend, Carl Ryves 50 donors contributed well over $100,000 in cash and goods in kind. You can see the restored Taipan on display in the museum.

    The Wharfies' Mural

    In the 1950s a group of artists - mostly waterside workers (wharfies) - painted a remarkable mural on the walls of the Waterside Workers Federation union canteen in Sussex Street, Sydney. The painting narrated the history of Australia's working class from the 1930s Depression to World War II. In 1996, the union's successor, the Maritime Union of Australia (MUA), offered the mural to the museum.

    Over the years, the 8.3-metre long painted plaster had split and its varnish was flaking. The museum launched an appeal for $100,000 to transport, conserve and provide ongoing support for this important historical work.

    The target was quickly reached thanks to generous donations from MUA branches, the Maritime Workers of Australia Credit Union and individual maritime workers, shipping companies and other corporate supporters. This extraordinary 'social document exalting the power of unity and the workers' struggle against oppression' has now been fully restored.

    1907 Painting of Sydney Harbour

    This unique watercolour panorama of Sydney Harbour above was painted in 1907 and is 20 metres long. Before we could display this wonderful artwork, it was cleaned, repaired and stabilised. This delicate restoration and maintenance work was sponsored by the generous Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation. The painting is now displayed in the museum for visitors to enjoy.

    A Rare Book About Early Colonial Settlement

    This first edition book titled, A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson in New South Wales: Including an Accurate Description of the Situation of the Colony: Of the Natives And of its Natural Productions, was published in 1793. It was written by Watkin Tench and is widely recognised as the earliest authentic First Fleet description of European settlement in Australia. It contains rare insights into first contact with Australia’s Indigenous population and the way that the Europeans sought to claim and settle on Aboriginal land. The book’s original owner, Betty Rosamund Baxter, died in 2010. Betty requested that the book be placed in a library so that others could have access to this significant chapter in Australian history. Her son John Baxter spent a year trying to find a library that would take care of this precious piece of history. We were delighted to accept the book as a donation to the museum’s Vaughan Evans Library by John in 2014.

    A Wooden Relic

    Initially thought to be from HMB Endeavour, it is now believed this sternpost originally came from another famous ship commanded by Captain James Cook - HMS Resolution. Cook made his second and third voyages on board the Royal Navy ship to the Pacific and through the Northwest Passage in 1772 and 1776 respectively. It was during this third and final voyage that Cook was killed in Hawaii in 1779. The Resolution went on to service the navy in the East Indies before it was captured in 1782 by the French warship Sphinx. It is believed that Resolution worked under different names in the French whaling industry until it was finally condemned at Newport, Rhode Island in 1792.

    This sternpost was generously donated to the Australian National Maritime Museum by the Newport Historical Society in Rhode Island, both in recognition of its substantial historical value as well as to the cultural bond between two countries.


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