Special Collections Research Center

Policies Governing the Use of Archives,
Manuscripts, and Special Collections

The University of Chicago Library (the “Library”) acquires, preserves, and makes available archives, manuscripts, and special collections in all formats for the use of University of Chicago faculty, students, alumni, staff, visiting scholars, and members of the public.  The following policies govern access, copying, and distribution of these materials.

ACCESS

Researchers requesting access to archives, manuscripts, and special collections must complete the Library’s online registration process that constitutes an agreement by the researcher to comply with the Library's stated policies for use of these materials. Access is subject to restrictions defined by federal and state law, University of Chicago administrative policies, gift and bequest agreements, and Library preservation standards.

COPYING AND REPRODUCTION

Requests by researchers to make copies or for the Library to provide copies of archives, manuscripts, and special collections must be submitted using a Library request form that constitutes an agreement by the researcher not to reproduce, distribute, broadcast, publicly display, offer for sale, or otherwise use or publish any material subject to copyright, or a portion thereof, in excess of fair use, as defined by copyright law, without the express permission of the copyright holder and the Library.  Copies of archives, manuscripts, and special collections are intended solely for the individual consultation of the researcher.

USE AND PUBLICATION

Permission to consult archives, manuscripts, and special collections, or to obtain a copy of such material, does not convey the right to use or publish in any manner the material subject to copyright.  Such rights are secured only with the joint permission of the holder of copyright and the Library as owner of the material.  The holder of copyright may be the writer or creator, the writer or creator's heirs or assigns, the writer or creator's literary executor or other designated legal representative, or the University of Chicago. Other legal restrictions in addition to copyright, such as privacy, publicity and trademark rights, may also limit a researcher’s use of archives, manuscripts, and special collections.

When permission to use or publish is granted, the researcher agrees to give proper acknowledgment to the Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library, as owner and source of the material. Although the Library will not require researchers to request permission to use or publish copies of material from its collections that are in the public domain (i.e., material with expired copyrights or otherwise ineligible for copyright protection), as a matter of good scholarly practice, we request that researchers still acknowledge the Library’s Special Collections Research Center as the owner and source of such materials. Notwithstanding any assistance the Library may provide researchers to help identify materials that are in the public domain, the responsibility for determining whether a work is in the public domain or subject to copyright, as well as any liability arising from such determination or researcher’s use of the material, shall rest solely with the researcher.

RESEARCHER ACKNOWLEDGES THAT IT IS HIS OR HER RESPONSIBILITY TO BE AWARE OF AND TO CONFORM TO THE LAWS OF LIBEL, PRIVACY, PUBLICITY, TRADEMARK, AND COPYRIGHT. RESEARCHER AGREES TO ASSUME FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR AND AGREES TO DEFEND AND INDEMNIFY THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO, ITS BOARD OF TRUSTEES, OFFICERS, EMPLOYEES, AND AGENTS AGAINST ANY AND ALL CLAIMS, DEMANDS, DAMAGES, LIABILITIES, COSTS, OR EXPENSES (INCLUDING ATTORNEYS' FEES) ARISING OUT OF OR RELATED TO HIS OR HER USE OF THE ARCHIVES, MANUSCRIPTS, OR SPECIAL COLLECTIONS OF THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO LIBRARY.