The Prints and Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC) contains catalog records and digital images representing a rich cross-section of still pictures held by the Prints & Photographs Division and, in some cases, other units of the Library of Congress. The Library of Congress offers broad public access to these materials as a contribution to education and scholarship.
The collections of the Prints & Photographs Division include photographs, fine and popular prints and drawings, posters, and architectural and engineering drawings. While international in scope, the collections are particularly rich in materials produced in, or documenting the history of, the United States and the lives, interests and achievements of the American people.
Although the catalog is added to on a regular basis, it is not an exhaustive listing of the holdings of the Prints & Photographs Division, which consist of more than 14 million items. Paper finding aids, card catalogs, and browsing files of pictures available on site supplement descriptions in PPOC.
The catalog includes:
In some cases only "thumbnail" images ("gif" images) will display to those searching outside the Library of Congress because of potential rights considerations, while on-site searchers have access to larger "jpeg" and "tiff" images, as well.
In some collections, only a portion of the images have so far been digitized.
The Prints & Photographs Online Catalog overlaps with some other Library of Congress search systems. For example:
Some of the records in PPOC are also found in the Library of Congress Online Catalog, but PPOC includes additional records, direct display of digital images, and links to information about rights, obtaining copies, and background information about the collections represented in the catalog.
PPOC includes all the Prints & Photographs Division items represented in American Memory as well as additional materials not included in American Memory. Conversely, picture collections from other archives or libraries included in American Memory are not included in PPOC (e.g., Photographs from The Chicago Daily News, 1902-1933).
Rights assessment is your responsibility.
As a publicly supported institution the Library generally does not own rights to material in its collections. Therefore, it does not charge permission fees for use of such material and cannot give or deny permission to publish or otherwise distribute material in its collections. It is the patron's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other use restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the Library's collections.
The nature of historical archival collections means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine. Whenever possible, the Library provides information about copyright owners and other restrictions in the catalog records or other texts that accompany collections. The Library provides such information as a service to aid patrons in determining the appropriate use of an item, but that determination ultimately rests with the patron. The Library of Congress is eager to hear from any copyright owners who are not properly identified so that appropriate information may be provided in the future.
For further information, see the Prints & Photographs Division "Rights and Restrictions Information" page.
September 13, 2010