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The William Society

The William Society recognizes and honors those friends and Members of The Metropolitan Museum of Art who have made a commitment to the future of this institution by including the Museum in their estate plans.

You may become a member of The William Society by:

  • Making a gift to the Metropolitan in your will or trust
  • Participating in a life income arrangement for the benefit of the Museum, such as a charitable remainder trust or charitable gift annuity
  • Creating a lead trust for the benefit of the Metropolitan
  • Naming the Museum as a beneficiary of a retirement plan or life insurance policy
  • Promising a gift of a work of art that the Museum has agreed to accept

We hope that you will join us.

There are no dues or fees associated with membership in The William Society. With their permission, members are listed in the Museum's Annual Report and on the Museum's website, and also receive invitations to exclusive events at the Museum. Most important, members of The William Society know they are ensuring the Metropolitan's standard of excellence for future generations.

Who is William?

One of the most popular ancient Egyptian figures in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum—and sometimes referred to as the Museum's unofficial mascot—"William" was originally intended to provide protection and power in the afterlife. As the symbol of The William Society, this beloved hippopotamus embodies the enduring qualities of The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

In celebration of The William Society's twentieth anniversary, we are delighted to share a reprint of an article explaining the origins of William's name that appeared in the June 1931 Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin.

Contact Us

For more information on how these gifts might work for you, please call Planned Giving at 212-570-3796 or email us.

Planned Giving
Development Office
The Metropolitan Museum of Art
1000 Fifth Avenue
New York, NY 10028-0198