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Rights and Reproductions

How to request reproductions of archival materials from the Archives of American Art.

The Archives of American Art is happy to provide digital reproductions; however, please keep in mind that all requests are subject to the following conditions:

Getting Started

All requests are made through the Explore the Collections section of the Archives of American Art website using the Research Request System, Aeon (opens in a new window). If you are interested in requesting materials and have not already registered with Aeon, please be sure to do so.

Making a Request

There are two ways to submit a research request depending on the material you want to see:

Item records
(such as images, oral histories, audiovisual materials)
collection records without finding aids (detailed container inventories
Collection records with finding aids
(detailed container inventories)

These records will contain buttons in the "Make a Request" section of the record.

  1. Select the “Reproduction Request” button

  2. The request will then be completed in the Archives’ research request system. Please fill in all information available about the item to be sure your request can be processed.

These records will contain checkboxes at the box and folder level of the container inventory within the “Make a Request” section

  1. Select your desired materials, then click the “Reproduction Request” button and fill out the remaining information in the light-box form.

  2. Once you’ve submitted your request, please send a reference image to, noting your Aeon transaction number in the subject line.


There is a limit of 10 items per order if new scanning is required. Please note: high-resolution images may not exist for all digitized collections. If you require more than 10 new scans, you may place another order after your initial order is complete.

If you have already received a digital item from the Archives of American Art and would like to reuse it, please submit a request through the research request system and note that you are interested in reusing the item. In order to protect both you and the Archives, we must have a reproduction agreement in place. All reuse requests are subject to a $25.00 administrative fee. 

Image Reproductions
Use Price Deliverable
Students and Smithsonian Fellows
Up to 5 free images per year for academic research and non-published papers, including graduate thesis or dissertation. 
Valid credentials and details of the paper or project must be provided. We reserve the right to review all requests of this nature to determine whether or not they fit the criteria.

A high resolution, publication-quality digital image file, with the exception of the Website/Online/Digital Application files, which are optimized for screen viewing 
at 72 ppi

Personal, research, and classroom use

Not for reproduction or duplication of any kind.
$25.00 per image
Printed publications, exhibitions, website/online/digital applications, and film/television (please see Smithsonian policies section) $75.00 per image
Reuse of a high-resolution image already provided by the Archives of American Art $25.00 per image N/A


Audio-Visual Reproductions
Use Price Deliverable

Personal, research, and classroom use

Not for reproduction or duplication of any kind.

Please note the audio-visual material must be duplicated in its entirety.

$1.00 per minute
$25.00 minimum


$2.00 per minute
$25.00 minimum


Non-profit Excerpts

Video and Audio:
$2.00 per second
$250.00 minimum

MP3, MP4, or WAV

Commercial Excerpts

Video and Audio:
$10.00 per second
$250.00 minimum

MP3, MP4, or WAV


Collection Folder and Oral History Transcript Photoduplication
Use Price Deliverable

Personal, research, and classroom use 

Not for reproduction or duplication of any kind.

$30.00 per folder
Maximum of 10 folders


All orders are processed in the order they are received. After submitting your order, you will receive a quote within two business days, with your reproduction agreement and invoicing information to follow shortly thereafter.

Request type

Reproductions of images that do not require digitization

10 business days from the receipt of the completed reproduction agreement and payment

Reproductions of images that require digitization

Within 4 weeks of the completed reproduction agreement and payment

Reuse of a high-resolution image already provided by the Archives of American Art

Approximately 5 business days, generally less

Audio-visual reproductions that do not require new digitization

Approximately 10 business days

Audio-visual reproductions that require new digitization

Within 4 weeks of the completed reproduction agreement and payment


Rush Services

Rush services are available for most purposes, but are subject to staff availability and the current status of our queue. Please note that rush services are not available for television broadcasts and film/documentary uses.

To Request Rush Services

Please note in your Aeon request by what date order fulfillment is needed. A staff member will notify you if we are able to complete your order within the desired time period.

Rush Fees

Rush Fee

Student, personal, and research uses

$50.00 per image

All other uses (excluding television broadcasts and film/documentary uses)

$150.00 per image

Audio-visual reproductions and photoduplication

+100% per item



Documents, photographs, art work, microfilm, recordings, and transcripts owned by the Archives of American Art may be protected by copyright, trademark, or a related interest not owned by the Archives. It is the sole responsibility of the applicant to determine whether any such rights exist, and to obtain necessary permission for use. 

Copyright Research Tools



Smithsonian Policies Regarding Television Broadcasts, Film, and Documentary Uses

The Smithsonian Institution has an agreement with Showtime Networks, Inc, which requires that all requests for material to be used in film and television productions go through the Smithsonian film committee for approval. You will need to submit an application, which can be found online at (opens in a new window). Your application will be automatically sent to the film committee staff. While many questions are structured towards filming in and at Smithsonian facilities, please do try to answer the questions to the best of your ability.

Before we can supply any materials for use in film or television productions, we must receive your approval from the film committee, the signed contract that the Smithsonian Office of Contracting will prepare for you, and payment for the digital files.

Requests subject to film committee approval can take several weeks to a few months to process, so please build that into your production schedule. Note: All requests for status updates should be directed to the Smithsonian Office of Public Affairs at 202-633-2400.

Questions about an order? Please contact our rights and reproductions coordinator at