Make a Gift of Funds

Financial Gifts

The Ohio State University Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum welcomes financial contributions which are used to support our mission to develop a comprehensive research collection documenting American printed cartoon art, to organize the materials, and to provide access to these resources. We rely on the generous donations of our supporters:

  • To help us acquire, catalog and preserve cartoon-related materials including books, periodicals, original art and manuscript collections
  • To support our educational programming including exhibitions, presentations, workshops, and online resources for teachers and researchers
  • To assist us in making our collection accessible to researchers and scholars around the world
  • To support BICLM programming in conjunction with Cartoon Crossroads Columbus (CXC), an annual city-wide comics festival that celebrates the diversity of the cartoon arts and their creators across genres and forms and highlights Columbus and its comics community for the world. To make a donation in memory of Tom Spurgeon, CXC’s former Executive Director, please use this fund.

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum is a non-profit, educational institution and financial donations are tax-deductible.

Giving online is fast, easy, and secure! 
Make a gift to the Cartoon Library and Museum Support Fund | Fund Number 308558

Make a gift to the Cartoon Crossroads Columbus Support Fund | Fund Number 307256

Mail in a check made out to The Ohio State University Foundation (please indicate which fund) and mail to:

Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum
The Ohio State University
110 Sullivant Hall, 1813 N. High St.
Columbus, OH 43210

Buckeyefunder – Help Preserve Comic Strip History!

The San Francisco Academy of Comic Art (SFACA) Collection is the life work of author and collector Bill Blackbeard, whose goal was to establish a complete collection of cartoon art from American newspapers, beginning with the earliest examples. In addition, the SFACA collection grew to include popular periodicals, popular fiction, popular film, narrative art reference works, comic books and graphic novels, dime novels and story papers, Victorian cartoon-illustrated fiction, science fiction fanzines, British boys’ papers and “penny dreadfuls,” and the works of significant fiction writers, all of these reflecting Blackbeard’s desire to amass a comprehensive collection of popular narrative.

It consists of 2.5 million newspaper comic strip clippings, single comic pages, complete Sunday sections, entire newspapers and bound volumes of American newspapers, dating from 1893 to 1996.

The Project: 

Despite the work previously completed since 1998, 2,000 boxes of material from this massive collection remain uncatalogued and undiscoverable, at risk of being forgotten.

Donations support:

  • Our Project Archivists’ salary and benefits
  • Additional archival housing material
  • One or two Ohio State student assistants

The Impact:

The San Francisco Academy of Comic Art Collection project is at the heart of BICLM’s mission to inspire the study and appreciation of cartoon and comic art. As a cultural heritage center, we collect, preserve and make accessible materials that represent a diversity of voices for research, teaching, exhibitions, and educational programming. 

This collection contains the graphic art of thousands of artists, including such luminaries as Winsor McCay, George Herriman, Nell Brinkley, Lyonel Feininger, Frank King, Milton Caniff, Edwina Dumm, Hal Foster, Walt Kelly, and Charles Schulz, as well as many whose work has not received the appreciation and critical attention it deserves because of the lack of access. The collection also includes incredibly rare copies of the Chicago Defender, one of the definitive Black Press newspapers. It is imperative that we rehouse and catalog this historically and artistically-significant collection so that broad public access can be provided for exhibitions, for research, and for teaching. Creating access to these irreplaceable source materials and artistic commentaries on the social, political, and cultural happenings across time will offer unique insights to researchers while inspiring diverse, broad audiences for generations to come. Thanks to Bill Blackbeard’s collection, BICLM is the only place in the world where much of this material can be studied, and we can only imagine what discoveries remain in the thousands of uncatalogued boxes. We need your help!



Establishing an endowment

An endowment is truly a gift that “keeps on giving” as it yields – every year – the interest from the endowment principal. These endowments will go on in perpetuity providing the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum with valuable resources for its collections, its faculty, its facilities and its programs.

What is an endowment?

An important objective that guides the investment of endowment funds is to preserve and maintain the real purchasing power of the principal. Gifts are invested in perpetuity, and distribution from the invested contributions is used to fund important programs and activities. A portion of the distribution may be reinvested in the fund at the request of the donor or department to further enhance the fund’s buying power over time.

All endowed fund gifts at Ohio State are pooled together with other long-term university assets to form the Long-Term Investment Pool (LTIP). Within this pool are well-diversified U.S. and international investments that include:

  • Equities
  • Fixed Income
  • Real Estate/Natural Resources
  • Private Equity
  • Absolute Return/Hedge Funds

Who manages my endowment?

The Office of Investments is responsible for managing the endowment. The university strives to earn the highest possible return from interest, dividends, realized gains, and market value increases while maintaining an appropriate level of risk.

To do this, the services of external investment managers are utilized. The Office of Investments closely monitors the performance of the endowment portfolio, with reallocation occurring as needed.

How is a fund Established?

New named funds are established by the Board of Trustees upon receipt of a gift of $50,000 or more for an unrestricted endowed fund and $100,000 for a restricted endowed fund.

Endowment descriptions, which identify how funds shall be used, are approved by the donor, the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, and the Board of Trustees.

The endowment operates much like a mutual fund. Each named fund owns a number of shares in the LTIP based on the value of gifts to that fund. Representing a uniform portion of the pool, the number of shares owned is used to calculate the distribution to each named fund.

Endowments are named by the donor. Often they carry the name of the donor or the donor’s family, or they honor or memorialize someone loved or respected. Restricted endowments provide support to students, faculty, or programs as specifically determined by the donor. Unrestricted endowments are of great benefit to the Libraries and provide resources for the Curator of the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum along with the Director of the Libraries to meet emerging priorities at their discretion.

How do you determine the value of a share?

The value of a share is determined by dividing the total current market value of the assets in the LTIP by the number of shares outstanding. Example: If the LTIP was worth $2,000,000,000 on a given date and there were 400,000 total shares, each share would be worth $5,000. Note: This value is determined monthly by the Office of Financial Services and will increase or decrease in direct relation to investment performance and expenses.

New shares are issued monthly when gifts to new or existing endowed funds are received from The Ohio State University Foundation. Example: If a donor gave $50,000 to start a new named fund, the fund would own ten shares ($50,000/$5,000), and the total number of shares would increase to 400,010.

How are named funds administered based on endowment descriptions?

The endowment description, authorized by the University Board of Trustees when the fund is established, states each named fund’s purpose. Each fund is administered by the college or university department designated by the donor(s) and the Board of Trustees. It is the college dean’s or the department chair’s responsibility to make expenditures from the fund under directions set forth in the endowment description.

If distributions are not used in a given fiscal year, the college or department may carry the balance forward into the next fiscal year for purposes specified in the endowment description; or the unused distribution may be reinvested to principal, thereby securing additional shares.

To obtain additional shares, some endowment descriptions automatically require unused distribution or a portion of annual distribution to be returned to principal.

What is a fund’s distribution schedule?

It is the university’s policy to make a distribution to each fund at the beginning of each fiscal year. The annual distribution equals 4.50% of the average market value-per-share of the endowment during the past seven years. Example: If over the last seven years, the LTIP averaged a monthly market value-per-share of $6,000, the spendable distribution for the upcoming year would equal $270 per share ($6,000 x 4.50%). A fund with ten shares would thus receive $2,700 ($270 x 10 shares) in distribution.

What is the built-in growth for a fund?

If annual endowment earnings exceed annual distribution, the excess is retained in the LTIP, increasing the pool’s market value (the base upon which the distribution is calculated). This, in turn, enhances future distributions for each individual endowment fund and helps compensate for inflation. Therefore, an individual endowment fund’s principal and number of shares do not increase, but the market value will increase with excess returns.

While there is no guarantee this method will keep the endowment ahead of inflation, the strategy is intended to help preserve the purchasing power of the endowment and ensures that the purposes for which any named fund was established are carried out indefinitely.

Endowed Chairs and Professors

The Board of Trustees approves the establishment of endowed chair and professorship positions as well as the appointments of faculty to the chairs. Appointment to an endowed chair and professorship remains the highest honor an academic institution can bestow upon a faculty member.

Other Types of Gifts

For more information about other ways to give, visit the Ohio State University Library’s Other Types of Gifts. If you have questions about making a gift of funds to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, please email