Obtaining Digital Images - A step-by-step guide

The American Antiquarian Society offers a variety of reproduction services as an aid to scholarly and general research, in accordance with its mission to provide access to our outstanding collections of rare printed books, newspapers, manuscripts and graphics while preserving them for the use of future generations. If you need just photocopies, please read our copy policy page.

Freely Available Images Online

The Society makes available, without charge, all of our existing medium resolution (up to 72 dpi) digital images that are in the public domain to be used for any purpose under the terms of a Creative Commons License. No permission is required* though attribution is required. The Society's preferred credit line for all uses is, "Courtesy, American Antiquarian Society."

Ordering Images


Always begin your search by exploring our General Catalog and our website, which includes our digital projects, exhibitions and illustrated inventories. For many items that are already digitized, you will find links in the General Catalog to our digital image archive, GIGI. You may also browse and do limited searching within the GIGI system.

 You may freely download and use any of these images for your own research, for teaching and presentations, or for non-commercial projects.  There is no fee for this service; the Society's preferred credit line for all uses is:

"Courtesy, American Antiquarian Society"

We strongly recommend that high-resolution images be used in print publications (See #3 below).



If you cannot find the material you need, please contact reproductions@mwa.org for assistance. We are happy to help with quick requests, but those requiring extensive research on the part of the AAS may incur a research fee, which must be authorized in advance.



To request a high-resolution image (maximum 240 dpi at 125% tiff files)**, please complete an Image Request Form indicating your intended use of the image(s). The Image Request Form must be completed in full and can be submitted electronically, by email, fax, or postal mail. For all high-resolution images, the Society charges a processing fee (per order) and, when new photography/scanning is required, a shot fee (per image). The processing fee is higher when the intended use of the image(s) is for a commercial enterprise (textbook, trade book, popular magazine, advertising, merchandise, etc.). All fees will be quoted and must be paid in advance. The Society may waive the processing fee in exchange for a copy of a book in which the image is published.

$15 for a non-commercial order from existing photography $5 per image
May be discounted for multi-page orders from a single source
$25 for a non-commercial order requiring new photography  
$115 for a commercial order from existing photography  
$125 for a commercial order requiring new photography  
A RUSH order will double all normal fees.
Research fee, when required $40/hour


Helpful Hint: Whenever possible please include the “Catalog Record” number found in each General Catalog entry; this will expedite your request. Here, circled in yellow, is the Catalog Record number as it appears in a sample general catalog record:

Please contact us and let us know how we may help you!

American Antiquarian Society
185 Salisbury Street
Worcester, MA 01609
Email: reproductions@mwa.org
Telephone: (508) 755-5221 x174
Fax: (508) 754-9069 

*If you have concerns or questions about copyright, please review the very helpful summary compiled by the Cornell University Copyright Information Center.

**The camera is a Canon EOS-1DX and the lens for photography is a Sigma 70mm f/2.8 DG Macro Art Lens
Image above: Original Groups. 31. Seeking to penetrate the mysteries of photography. Stereocard collection. Box 321.

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