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Georgetown University Library, Booth Family Center for Special Collections Reproductions and Permissions Policy

Policy Statement

On-site Self-service Orders

On-site Full-service Orders (policy, billing, delivery)

Off-site Requests (policy, billing, delivery)

Digital Reproductions

Photographic and Custom Orders

Policy Statement

The Georgetown University Library, Booth Family Center for Special Collections (BFCSC) will consider requests for reproductions of specific items from its collections subject to limitations imposed by U.S. Copyright Law, donor restrictions, curatorial approval, conservation and security concerns, and available resources, as stipulated in the following policy. This policy applies to both on- and off-site researchers.

  • The Copyright Act of 1976 (PL 94-553) provides statutory protection for all writings from the dates of their creation, whether or not they are formally copyrighted. Generally, the term of copyright is the life of the author plus 70 years. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain permission for the publication and commercial use of material not clearly in the public domain as penalties for violation of this statute are severe. Read more about copyright at
  • Reproductions of published material without the permission of the copyright holder are restricted by federal law to excerpts (not the whole) of books, articles, essays, etc., and to scholarly, noncommercial use only.
  • Reproductions of unpublished material, such as correspondence, all papers, and photographs from manuscripts collections, are permitted if the copy/literary rights to the collection have been transferred to Georgetown University or if permission is granted by the original owner or executor of the papers. For each collection, please check with staff.
  • Reproductions of any published material from the Georgetown University Archives are permitted. Reproductions of department/office files are prohibited without the written consent of the generating department/office and of the university archivist.
  • Written permission must be obtained from the owners of the copy/literary rights and from Georgetown University for any publication or commercial use of reproductions. The permission granted by Georgetown University Library to use reproductions of material held in BFCSC does not constitute and may not be substituted for permission from the owner of the copy/literary rights, which it is the direct responsibility of the user to obtain.
  • Reproductions of extremely aged and fragile material will not be permitted. Reproductions will not be made from books, newspapers, and serials that can be found elsewhere in the library or from an online source.
  • Reproductions from the manuscripts and rare books collections must be pre-approved by the manuscripts curator and rare books librarian, respectively. Reproductions from the University Archives must be approved by the university archivist. Requests for reproductions from the University Art Collection will be referred to the art collection curator.
  • A One-time Use Permission Form and fee will be issued for the commercial use of a reproduction for a single, specified project . Further use of a reproduction for another project/purpose requires a new application for permission and payment of additional fees. A printed notice or complimentary copy of the exhibition, publication, film/television media in which the reproduction(s) will appear must be sent to SCRC.
  • Credit must be given to BFCSC for all published material as follows:
    • Preferred citation for manuscripts: Collection Name: Box #/ Folder #, Georgetown University Library , Booth Family Center for Special Collections, Washington, D.C.
    • Preferred citation for Georgetown University Archives: Collection name, Folder title, Box #, Folder #, Georgetown University Archives.
    • Preferred citation for books: Rare Books Collection, Georgetown University Library, Booth Family Center for Special Collections, Washington, D.C.
  • Deposit of reproductions in another repository is prohibited.

All requests for reproductions must be submitted via the online Reproductions Request and Agreement Form

On-site Requests

Self-Service Orders

On-site researchers may request permission from the BFCSC to make a limited number of their own digital images using a personal camera. Researchers utilizing material from multiple BFCSC curatorial units (i.e., University Archives, University Art Collection, Manuscripts Collections, Rare Books Collections) must request separate permissions from each curator prior to photographing material from the respective unit(s). If approved, the Reproductions Request and Agreement Form will be issued stipulating the foregoing SCRC Reproductions and Permissions Policy and requiring a signature of agreement. A list of items reproduced must be attached to the form. Number of original pages permitted for reproduction will depend on the physical condition of the items and any additional restrictions imposed by the relevant curator. Each image must show the BFCSC target, which will be provided by BFCSC staff. Further set-up instructions may be issued by BFCSC staff. All flash and sound features on equipment must be deactivated.

Full-Service Orders

  1. Staff must be notified if reproductions will be requested. It is the researcher's responsibility to indicate what items are to be reproduced and to complete the Reproductions Request and Agreement Form.
  2. PLEASE DO NOT REMOVE ORIGINAL MATERIAL FROM FOLDERS. Use paper markers (provided by BFCSC) to tag the selected items. Use one marker per item. Identify the item and indicate collection name, box/folder numbers and number of pages on each marker. Place the marker in front of the item so that the marker is visible when the folder is replaced in the box. Folders and contents should not be left standing upright in the box. Box covers should be replaced securely on all boxes. Be sure to indicate to staff which boxes contain reproduction orders and which boxes can be reshelved!
  3. Page limitations on Manuscripts, University Archives, and Rare Books materials will be determined for each order by the Manuscripts staff, University Archivist, and Rare Books Librarian, respectively.

Billing and Delivery for Full-Service Photocopies

  1. Completion of orders is based on staff time and availability. ORDERS WILL NOT BE COMPLETED ON A WHILE-YOU-WAIT BASIS. All orders (except digital reproductions) will be mailed unless otherwise requested on order forms. BFCSC is not responsible for damage or loss of reproductions sent by mail.
  2. Requests are completed in turn with priority given to smaller orders.
  3. Cost for photocopies: 50 cents per page. Orders estimated at $25.00 or more will incur a deposit fee of $25.00. Additional fees are charged for materials requiring special handling or orders requiring more than 1 hour of staff time (see fees in Digital Reproductions section below).
  4. Payment must be received by BFCSC before orders are delivered.
  5. To request digital/photographic reproductions, see sections below.

Off-site Requests

In general, BFCSCrecommends an on-site visit as the best approach to scholarly research; however a limited number of reproductions will be considered for off-site requests. Requests must be item specific and limited to a selection of no more than 25 pages of originals, Off-site requests are charged a base rate of $25.00. Additional fees may be incurred for special handling and extra labor (see fees in next section).

Digital Reproductions


Prices are per exposure unless otherwise specified.

  • Research quality images -- $3.00/image
  • High resolution images are referred to the Gelardin New Media Center. See Photographic and Custom Orders
  • Retrieved images from existing files -- $1.00/image
  • Fragile items or those requiring special handling (e.g., over-sized items) will incur an additional fee (minimum $10.00)
  • For every order, each additional hour after the first hour of staff time incurs a fee of $10.00/hour
  • Orders estimated at $25.00 or more will incur a deposit fee of $25.00.


Allow up to 4 weeks for delivery. Large orders may require additional time.

  • Email
  • CD or DVD -- $5.00 per disk
  • USPS First Class $7.00 domestic; Airmail $14.00.


Full payment must be received before orders can be delivered.

All payments must be made in U.S. currency via check or money order payable to Georgetown University Library. Mail payment to Attn:Copy Orders, Georgetown University Library, Booth Family Center for Special Collections, Box 571174, Washington, DC 20057-1174.

Photographic and Custom Orders

Requests for photographic or custom orders are completed and invoiced by the Gelardin New Media Center which offers full services in graphics, photography and audio-visual production services. For a complete list of services and fees offered by the Gelardin New Media Center, see their schedule of Production Services fees.


SpC Rev. 9/2014