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Black and white photograph of the Austin History Center Photo Lab, showing a 4-by-5 copy stand system.

[AHC Photo Lab with 4x5 copy system], 1991, PICA-24875 detail

Requesting Reproductions

Requesting Reproductions Frequently Asked Questions

Requesting Reproductions Frequently Asked Questions link

Before You Begin: 

Please note: Due to staff limitations, the turnaround time is about two weeks. Large or complex orders may take longer.

Some of our resources are already available for free and instant download via online databases. To learn more about requesting permissions for these online materials, please see the bottom section of this page.

We also have ready-to-go prints of Favorite Photographs for sale in our reading room.

Reproduction Request Forms

You may use the forms to request any of the following:

  • Hi-res digital images of collection items
  • Audiovisual reproductions
  • Permission to use reproductions for publication and/or display

To submit your form, please send it to Austin History Center Reproduction Orders by email (AHCReproductionOrders@austintexas.gov), postal mail (address on form), or in person (during hours that we are open to the public).

Helpful Information for Preparing Requests

Please list applicable fees on the form:

Payment procedures:

  • We accept payment in the form of a check, or credit card. Institutions can be invoiced.
  • We can take in-person payments on days that we are open to the public. To run a credit card over the phone, please arrange a time frame for the phone call by contacting the Collections Manager.

Cases for re-submitting a request form:

  • You must submit a separate form for each new use of a reproduction, even if you have already obtained the image or AV material. Permissions are granted on a case-by-case basis.
  • Unless you are exempt, you will need to pay licensing fees for each new use. If exempt, you would still submit a new form to request permission only.
  • You do not need to repay reproduction fees to reuse images or AV material you have already purchased.

What is already available for download online?

Images for some of our collection items are available for free and instant download at:

If you’d like to use images from these databases for display or publication, you must request permission by submitting a Reproduction Request Form. You may also need to pay licensing fees.

The AHC images in these databases come from our photo lab, and therefore may be approved for publication upon request. The AHC only permits public display or publication of an image if it was produced in our photo lab.  

The AHC Digital Collections database only offers low-resolution (150dpi) images for download. As long as you submit a request form and get permission from the AHC, you may display the images from this database on websites only.  The AHC does not permit the use of low-res images (anything under 300dpi) in print publication, film, performance, broadcast, or public display. 

The Portal to Texas History database offers high-resolution images. If you cannot find a file at 300dpi or higher on the Portal, you must purchase a hi-res file from our photo lab.

Note: You will need to list item numbers on your form to request reproduction permission. Here is how to find an Item # in these databases:

  • AHC Digital Collections: The item number is at the top left of the record page, above the “Item Description” section.
  • The Portal to Texas History:  Scroll down to the “Identifier” field at the bottom of the record page. Remove the “ASPL_” prefix for the item number.

To learn more about how to navigate our collections on these databases, please visit our Online Photo Collections page.

Reproduction & Licensing Fees

Reproduction & Licensing Fees link

Payment Policies

Full payment is required in advance by cash, credit card, check or money order made out to “Austin Public Library.” Please mail checks to the address listed in the above letterhead (i.e. PO Box 2287). Texas Sales Tax is added for state residents unless proof of tax-exempt status is provided.

 

Reproduction Fees

The prices below include a 5% preservation fee. Files will be sent via email (with download link).

Image Reproduction

Fees per JPG image file (other file formats available upon request):

  • Standard: 300dpi at 8x10” - $5.00
  • Custom: Any resolution/size larger - $30.00

Audiovisual Reproduction

Video

  • Minimum fee: Up to 30 minutes - $50.00
  • Each additional 30 minutes - $25.00
  • Unless otherwise requested, all files SD .mov ProRes 4:2:2 .mp4/H624

Audio

  • Analog to digital, per recording - $25.00
  • Unless otherwise requested, all files .mp3 192 Kbps

Reproduction fees are waived for City of Austin general fund departments. City of Austin enterprise departments (Austin Convention Center, Austin Energy, Austin Resource Recovery, Austin Water Utility, and Aviation) must pay reproduction fees.

There are no reproduction fees for images you can freely download online on our Digital Collections platform or The Portal to Texas History. Use fees still apply for the publication or display of images available online, unless exempt (see licensing section below).

 

Licensing Fees

Customers in the following categories are exempt from use fee charges:

  1. Non-profit organizations. You must provide documentation of your 501(c)(3) status.
  2. Governmental entities. This includes local, state and federal governments.
  3. Local news media. Austin television news stations and publications that are published and distributed solely in the Travis County area are considered local news media.
  4. Private individuals using images for personal use or for display in a non-public area.

Licensing Fees for Publication or Display: Per Usage Type

For still image use, the costs listed below are per image file.

Books (Print)

  • 1-5,000 copies - $15.00
  • 5,001-10,000 copies - $25.00
  • 10,001-25,000 copies - $35.00
  • Over 25,000 copies - $60.00

Serials (Print)

  • Under 50,000 circulation - $15.00
  • 50,001-100,000 circulation - $25.00
  • Over 100,000 circulation - $35.00

Book Jacket: $75.00

Commercial Motion Picture or TV Use for Photographs (Still Images): $150.00
Includes Theatrical Release, Television Broadcast, Streaming Platforms, Home Video (any media), and Clips or Trailer from Full-Length Production for a single production for the life of the work.

Commercial Motion Picture or TV Use for Moving Images (Film or Video Footage)
Includes Theatrical Release, Television Broadcast, Streaming Platforms, Home Video (any media), and Clips or Trailer from Full-Length Production for a single production for the life of the work.

  • $30 / Second
  • $300 minimum

Website, Social Media, eBook, Online Journal, or Presentation Use: $25.00

Local Business Display: $25.00

Advertising Use: $175.00

Print or Digital Collateral: For promotional purposes only, not for commercial re-sale

  • 1-5,000 copies - $25.00
  • 5,001-10,000 copies - $35.00
  • 10,001-25,000 copies - $50.00
  • Over 25,000 copies - $60.00

Online Photo Collections

Online Photo Collections link

The Austin History Center has partnered with the University of North Texas' Portal to Texas History and the Texas State Library and Archives Commission to bring selections from some of our most interesting photo collections online. Browse all of our images available on the Portal or use the links below to browse specific collections. A selection of photographs from our collections is also available on our Austin History Center Digital Collections site. Other online collections with digitized text-based materials are described on our Online Collections page.

General Collection Photographs (Austin Files)

PICA 20859The General Collection Photographs (also called the Austin Files) consist of files organized by subject, biography, and street address ranging from the beginnings of the city to the present day. The photographs come from local citizens, city departments or other organizations. The subject files cover a wide range of topics. Only a small portion of these photographs (about 650) have been digitized. Image: [Anderson High School Students], PICA 20859

Bergstrom-Austin Community Council Records Photographs

AR.2000.024(121)This collection contains photographs which document over five decades of history of Bergstrom Air Force Base, originally known as Del Valle Air Base, from the 1940s until 1993. The photographsdepict the buildings on the base; personnel; aircraft in flight and at base; and other scenes of base activities including drills, ceremonies, and festivals. The photographs also document the closure of the Base and its transformation into Austin’s municipal airport in the 1990s. More than 250 photographs from the collection are available online through the Portal to Texas History. The finding aid for the collection is available through Texas Archival Resources Online. Image: [Aircrew Class 69-10B], 1968, AR.2000.024(121)

Chalberg Collection of Prints and Negatives

The bulk of the Chalberg Collection images cover Austin from 1900 to 1941, although some images of 19th century Austin are included. The collection comes from  the Ellison Photo Company. The Company was started in 1900 by E. P. Jordan as the Jordan Photograph Company. In 1914, Alfred Ellison and E. P. Cravens bought the company from Jordan's widow and it became the Jordan-Ellison Photo Company. By 1919, Ellison was the sole owner, Jordan was dropped from the name. Russell Chalberg joined the company in 1955 and purchased Ellison's interest in 1963. More than 250 images from this collection are viewable on the Portal to Texas History. Image: Congress Ave. & Sixth Street, C02001

Dewey Mears Photograph Archive

DM-53-C17562BDewey Mears was the preeminent architectural photographer in Central Texas in the late 20th century. Mears began his career in Austin, taking a variety of jobs, including advertising and event photography. By the mid-1950s he focused his efforts on architectural documentation. Mears reproduced renderings and drawings, photographed building construction, and documented finished buildings, especially buildings in the celebrated mid-century modern style. More than 20 architectural firms and 16 individual architects are represented in the collection. Photos also depict events, people, and organizations of Austin from 1945-1990s. Hundreds of photographs are being digitized by the Portal to Texas History. Image: [Roessner Residence Interior], DM-53-C17562B

Frank Caldwell Collection

Frank Caldwell (1883-1962) was a lifelong resident of Austin. Though he worked as a traveling salesman, his passion was Texas history and he spent much of his time collecting materials on the topic. His collection contains hundreds of photographs documenting various sites, towns, events, and people of Texas from about the 1880s through the 1930s. It includes a mix of personal snapshots and professional photographs. More than 250 photographs are available online through the Portal to Texas History. Image: [Boy Dressed as a Cowboy], AR.X.016(D116)

Hubert Jones Glass Plate Collection

J025The Hubert Jones Glass Plate Negative Collection contains 466 glass plate negatives that document late 19th century Austin life. It includes street scenes, historic buildings, and portraits. Hubert Jones, the donor of the collection, was an Austin resident and University of Texas Professor. The extremely delicate nature of glass plate negatives has hitherto made the vast majority of these images unavailable to the public. This digitization project allows patrons access to all of these unique images from our local history. The project was funded by a TexTreasures grant made possible by a grant from U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act. Image: [Unidentified Family], circa 1880s-1890s, J025

Jacob Bickler Family Papers

AR.Y.005(2046)The Bicklers were a family of German descent who settled in Texas in 1872. Jacob Bickler married Martha Lungkwitz, daughter of Prussian immigrant and landscape painter Hermann Lungkwitz. Jacob worked at the General Land Office where Martha had also worked as the first female employee of the state of Texas. After leaving the Land Office, Jacob taught in various schools until he founded the Texas German and English Academy, a private school for boys, in 1877. In 1887 when he became Superintendent of the Galveston public schools and returned to Austin in 1892 when he founded the Bickler Academy. Photographs in the collection document the Bickler and Lungkwitz families and life in Central Texas in the late 19th and early 20th centuries and include portraits of other prominent individuals, organizations, and events. Image: [Bickler Family], AR.Y.005(2046)

Neal Douglass Photograph Archive

The Neal Douglass Photograph Archive consists of over 50,000 photographic negatives. Douglass was the first photographer for the Austin American-Statesman and he ran his own studio alongside his journalism work. Photographs in the collection primarily consist of his commercial work from the 1940s to the 1970s. His clients included governors, legislators, civic leaders, and people from all walks of life. Nearly 4,000 images from this collection are viewable online through the Portal to Texas History. The finding aid for the collection is available through Texas Archival Resources Online. Image:Cowboy Rope Trick, ND-nd-A001-06

Travis County Negro Extension Service Photograph Collection

AR-2000-025-053Extension services in Texas began in 1915 when the Texas Legislature assigned administration of the Texas Agricultural Extension to Texas A&M University and established the Cooperative Extension Program administered by Prairie View A&M. Because of segregation practices in Texas, African-Americans were served through the Negro Extension Service program. This collection documents services and programs including animal husbandry, crafts, domestic education, gardening and agriculture, and home improvement. Especially well documented is the annual Food and Livestock Show held each year at Rosewood Park. The majority of the photos are candid snapshots depicting the participants at work in their classes and activities. More than 250 photographs from the collection are available online through the Portal to Texas History. The finding aid for the collection is available through Texas Archival Resources Online. Image: [Children and Award-Winning Cow], AR.2000.025(053)

Austin History Center channel on HistoryPin

The AHC has a channel on HistoryPin which allows photographs to be geo-located on a map and searched by timeframe. We have over 100 photographs from our General Collections and Archival Collections viewable on our channel.