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Requesting Copies from Schlesinger Library

Image Use Policy

This is our most current policy and supersedes any "Use Restrictions" note in the catalog which says that Schlesinger's permission is required for use of images.

  • The Schlesinger Library does not grant or deny permission to publish or otherwise use images from the collections when the image is in the public domain or when the Schlesinger does not administer the copyright for the image. It is the researcher's sole responsibility to obtain any necessary copyright permissions or make a Fair Use evaluation.

Credit Line 

  • Please always credit the library as the source of the original image. 
  • Credit Line: Schlesinger Library, Harvard Radcliffe Institute



If researchers wish to publish, reproduce, or otherwise make any use of an image in the Schlesinger Library’s collections that requires permission from the copyright holder(s) of the image, it is the researcher’s responsibility to obtain all such permissions.

In most cases, the Schlesinger Library does not hold the copyright for images in the collections. For photographs, copyright is often retained by the photographer. It is the nature of historical collections that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine. 

Copyright Notice:

The copyright law of the United States (Title 17, United States Code) governs the making of photocopies or other reproductions of copyrighted material. Under certain conditions specified in the law, libraries and archives are authorized to furnish a photocopy or other reproduction. One of these specified conditions is that the photocopy or reproduction is not to be "used for any purpose other than private study, scholarship, or research." If a user makes a request for, or later uses, a photocopy or reproduction for purposes in excess of "fair use", that user may be liable for copyright infringement. This institution reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Identifying the Rights Holder

  • There may be a photographer's stamp or other credit information on the front or back of the photograph. If the image has been digitized in HOLLIS Images, any credit information from the photograph will be noted in the catalog record.
  • You can also check other sources, such as publications which might include the image and have additional credit information.
  • The Schlesinger keeps contact information for photographers and other copyright holders on file from past rights research. Please Ask a Schlesinger Librarian for more information.

Useful Links for Copyright & Fair Use Information