U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: Jun 10, 2023
(a) Federal agencies may secure curatorial services using a variety of methods, subject to Federal procurement and property management statutes, regulations, and any agency-specific statutes and regulations on the management of museum collections. Methods that may be used by Federal agencies to secure curatorial services include, but are not limited to:
(1) Placing the collection in a repository that is owned, leased or otherwise operated by the Federal agency;
(2) Entering into a contract or purchase order with a repository for curatorial services;
(3) Entering into a cooperative agreement, a memorandum of understanding, a memorandum of agreement or other agreement, as appropriate, with a State, local or Indian tribal repository, a university, museum or other scientific or educational institution that operates or manages a repository, for curatorial services;
(4) Entering into an interagency agreement with another Federal agency for curatorial services;
(5) Transferring the collection to another Federal agency for preservation; and
(6) For archeological activities permitted on public or Indian lands under the Archaeological Resources Protection Act (16 U.S.C. 470 aa-mm), the Antiquities Act (16 U.S.C. 431–433) or other authority, requiring the archeological permittee to provide for curatorial services as a condition to the issuance of the archeological permit.
(b) Guidelines for selecting a repository. (1) When possible, the collection should be deposited in a repository that:
(i) Is in the State of origin;
(ii) Stores and maintains other collections from the same site or project location; or
(iii) Houses collections from a similar geographic region or cultural area.
(2) The collection should not be subdivided and stored at more than a single repository unless such subdivision is necessary to meet special storage, conservation or research needs.
(3) Except when non-federally-owned material remains are retained and disposed of by the owner, material remains and associated records should be deposited in the same repository to maintain the integrity and research value of the collection.
(c) Sources for technical assistance. The Federal Agency Official should consult with persons having expertise in the management and preservation of collections prior to preparing a scope of work or a request for proposals for curatorial services. This will help ensure that the resulting contract, memorandum, agreement or other written instrument meets the needs of the collection, including any special needs in regard to any religious remains. It also will aid the Federal Agency Official in evaluating the qualifications and appropriateness of a repository, and in determining whether the repository has the capability to provide adequate long-term curatorial services for a collection. Persons, agencies, institutions and organizations that may be able to provide technical assistance include, but are not limited to the:
(1) Federal agency's Historic Preservation Officer;
(2) State Historic Preservation Officer;
(3) Tribal Historic Preservation Officer;
(4) State Archeologist;
(5) Curators, collections managers, conservators, archivists, archeologists, historians and anthropologists in Federal and State Government agencies and Indian tribal museum;
(6) Indian tribal elders and religious leaders;
(7) Smithsonian Institution;
(8) American Association of Museums; and
(9) National Park Service.