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Photocopying of Prints & Photographs Division Materials by Patrons

Prints and Photographs Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., 20540-4730

All items must be shown to staff to determine whether they may be photocopied on Xerox machines. Not all P&P items may be photocopied because of concerns about the preservation of original images.

As a general rule, the following items may NOT be photocopied:

  1. Items in poor condition, i.e., fragile, brittle, faded, or damaged items.
  2. Items with format and medium considerations:
    • items too large for the surface of the copy machine
    • bound volumes, albums, and booklets (except, in general, reference books)
    • individually cataloged curatorial items, such as fine prints
    • Case (rare) books
    • color items and cyanotypes (except, in general, color surrogates).
  3. Items 70 years old or older.

There are several alternative ways to obtain copies of images that may not be photocopied on copy machines:

  1. Printouts of digitized images may be obtained from P&P computers, free of charge.
  2. Digitized images may be downloaded from the reading room public workstations, free of charge. Patrons must provide their own disks or USB flash drives and must know how to download images (written instructions are available in the reading room).
  3. Simple, hand-held camera copying is allowed under P&P's camera-copying policy.
  4. Quality reproductions of images may be purchased through the Library's Photoduplication Service or other vendors (see Reproductions of Prints & Photographs Division Images).

Prepared by: Prints and Photographs Division staff; last revised: February 2005.

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  November 30, 2007
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