How to Donate Books to the Friends of the Southeast Library Monthly Book Sale

The book sales rely on donations of books, CDs, and DVDs. The books are sold principally to friends and neighbors in the Capitol Hill community. Here is guidance on what and how to donate.

DO DONATE (hardback and paperback)

✓   non-fiction (e.g.; history, biography, memoirs, politics, philosophy, religion, science)

✓   fiction (popular-best sellers and classics)

✓   children's books (including early reader up to teen levels)

✓   travel guides (not more than seven years old) and writing

✓   poetry

✓   drama (plays and books about)

✓   cookbooks

✓   art and craft

✓    sports and recreation/trail guides (e.g.; hiking, biking, canoeing)

✓    home improvement and gardening

✓    music CDs, movie DVDs, and audio books on discs


✗   old computer manuals

✗   encyclopedias

✗   almanacs

✗   foreign language books

✗   magazines

✗   textbooks

✗   damaged, mildewed, underlined/highlighted and very worn out books

✗   specialized academic books

✗   technical books and books for medical professionals

✗   teaching materials

✗   legal case books

✗   VHS/cassette tapes

✗   vinyl records

There is limited library storage space, so books with a narrow sales market can’t be kept. When in doubt, think how likely it is that a friend or neighbor would want a book.


There is a blue donation bin outside the library back door. If it is not there it is likely inside being emptied by a volunteer, or rarely when we run out of storage space for books. Donations can also be left inside the back door to the right so as not to block access to the community room or the elevator. If you have several boxes of books to donate, please bring them when the library is open so the boxes can be put inside the back door.

If the donation bin is full and the library closed, please don’t overfill it, leaving the cover ajar. If it rains, all the books in the bin are ruined. Rather, bring them back when the library is open.

We are grateful for donations as the book sales support library programs. All the book sale work is done by volunteers. Unusable donations increase the work burden as they must be discarded.

Questions: Ask the library staff or email Bob Gellman ([email protected]).

Friends of Southeast Library

A volunteer group that supports the Southeast Library in Washington, D.C.

Book sales the second Saturday of every month.