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John Hay Library

Reproduction Services

The John Hay Library will reproduce Special Collections material to the extent that physical condition and copyright or other legal restrictions permit. Reproduction is available in the form of photocopies, microfilm, and digital scans.

Physical Condition. All reproduction requests must be approved by a member of the professional staff. Reproduction of manuscript material requires the permission of the appropriate curator. Decisions will take into account the type and condition of the binding, the brittleness of the paper, and the size and fragility of the item. For preservation purposes, microfilm is always the preferred medium for duplicating an entire volume. The choice to photocopy, scan, or microfilm rests solely with the Library.

Copyright. The Library adheres to the provisions of the 1976 Copyright Act and follows the minimum standards of educational fair use established under Section 107 of H.R. 2223 by the Ad Hoc Committee on Copyright Law Revision, the Authors League of America and the Association of American Publishers, Inc. In applying these standards, the Library will copy up to 10% of a copyrighted work if the copy is to be used for the purpose of private study, scholarship or research. The Library will not copy for the purpose of public performance. Physical condition permitting, the Library will copy more than 10% of a copyrighted work only with the written permission of the copyright holder. Multiple copies are not permitted under fair use.

For works created since 1978, copyright lasts from the creation of the work until 75 years after the author's death. For works published before 1978, with a copyright notice, the maximum duration of copyright protection is 75 years. Works published before 1978 without a copyright notice are assumed to be in the public domain.

The Library reserves the right to refuse to accept a copying order if, in its judgment, fulfillment of the order would involve violation of copyright law.

Procedures. All duplication requests require completion of an Application to Reproduce Special Collections Material which exists in two versions, one for manuscripts and one for non-manuscripts. If a copy is to be published in any format, an Application to Publish must be completed as well.

The forms must be sent by surface mail to the John Hay Library (address is on the form). Emailed or faxed forms cannot be accepted. The Library requires that individuals requesting reproductions of manuscript materials contact the John Hay Library directly, rather than using an Inter-Library Loan service. For further information, contact

Scanning and photocopying are carried out by Library staff members only. In order to prevent damage to book spines, material is photocopied one page at a time on a copier designed to reduce damage to bound material. No more than 50 pages will be copied from one volume. Hand-held copiers and scanners are not permitted. Personal cameras are allowed in the Reading Room. There is a copy stand that is available on a first-come first-served basis.

When possible, photocopying is done on demand. Digital scans usually require 2 weeks' notice. Large or complicated orders require advance notice and may be subject to a preparation fee of $15.00 per 100 pages. Researchers using manuscript collections are encouraged to bring a personal camera. Orders of more than 100 pages from a manuscript collection will be filled by microfilm rather than photocopy or scanning. See the Fee Schedules for specific information on duplications costs.

Reproduction and Publication Fee Schedules:

  1. Photocopies
  2. Microfilm
  3. Digital Imaging


  1. Application to Reproduce Manuscript Material
  2. Application to Reproduce Non-Manuscript Material
  3. Request for Digital Imaging
  4. Request for DPS Digital Imaging (rare or oversize materials)
  5. Application to Publish

Internet Resources on Copyright:

  1. U.S. Copyright Office
  2. Locating U.S. Copyright Holders
  3. Locating U.K. Copyright Holders
  4. Online Copyright Resources
  5. Music in the Public Domain
  6. Brown University Resources: Copyright @ Brown