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Now accepting donations of new and gently used books and DVDs!

PPL is accepting books and DVDs only, preferably packed inside taped boxes or reusable grocery bags. Please leave your donation on the loading dock at the Downtown Library (at the back of the library, with entry off of Elm Street). Branches cannot currently accept donations. Please limit your donation to 5 boxes per person. All donations will be sorted and sold in the PPL Annual Book Sale in September.

Other non-profits in the Portland area who may accept these donations include Goodwill of Northern New England or the Salvation Army. You may also consider taking a small number of used books to your neighborhood Little Free Library. Visit the Little Free Library World Map and enter “Portland, ME” to see a map).

Maine Prisoner Advocacy Coalition is also accepting book donations. Please email mpacbooks@gmail.com to schedule a materials donation.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does PPL add donated books to the collection?

We do not. All donated materials are sold at PPL’s September book sale to support general library operations. We do not circulate donated material because of the resources required to sort and enter any donated books into the system.

What kind of material donations do you currently accept?

We currently only accept books and DVDs. We cannot accept the following:

  • Audiobooks
  • Books with any mold, mildew, markings, or noticeable wear
  • CDs, Blu-Rays, or video cassettes
  • Children’s board books
  • Encyclopedias, dictionaries, or other reference books
  • Magazines
  • Maps or travel books
  • Puzzles, games, or other ephemera
  • Textbooks
  • Videogames

Will PPL offer a book-store again?

The Downtown Library currently offers a “FREE BOOKS” stand just inside the Congress St. doors.

When PPL is accepting donations, what happens to donated materials?

Donations will be sorted and sold in the PPL Annual Book Sale in September or sent to Better World Books. The proceeds from the sale are used to fund library programs. We do not add donated items to our collections as each item in circulation requires intensive processing.  If you have something special or rare beyond the scope of Portland that you are hoping to preserve, please consider finding a collector or archive that may be better equipped to handle your item.

I have an old book, map, or piece of ephemera. Would the Library be interested?

If you have items of historical significance that might be suitable for our archival collection, please call our Advancement Office at 207-871-1700, ext. 759. We can discuss the nature of your items with you to determine whether they would be appropriate for our special collection holdings.