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The Chicago History Museum’s Rights and Reproductions unit welcomes requests for reproductions of materials from the Museum’s vast and unique collection. It also provides licensing and permissions assistance to promote the use of our collection reproductions for a variety of personal, nonprofit, and commercial purposes, including research, home and retail decor; academic and commercial publications; television and film productions; exhibitions; promotional materials; merchandising, and more.

  • Image reproductions
  • Audiovisual reproductions
  • Architectural drawing reproductions
  • Photocopies
  • PhotoStore: Shop for high-quality prints and gifts!

Image Reproductions

  • License and download digital image files
  • Secure reproduction permissions (permissions-only requests)
  • Purchase high-quality prints and gifts
  • FAQs

License and download digital image files

We invite you to search or browse thousands of images from CHM’s collection and purchase and download digital files for personal, educational, commercial, and other categories of use. More images are being uploaded on a regular basis, so be sure to visit the site periodically for new collection-related imagery.

If you’re unable to find an image related to a certain topic, please contact us at [email protected]. Rights and Reproduction staff may be able to provide a reference image not available online or direct you to our Research Center staff for additional help. You can also visit CHM’s Research Center in person or hire a freelance researcher to view original printed material, archives and manuscripts, prints and photographs, architectural drawings and records, and assorted ephemera. Rights and Reproductions staff can also help guide you to research resources for the Museum collection: Architecture (models and fragments), Costume and Textile, Decorative and Industrial Arts, and Painting and Sculpture, including works on paper.

When requesting new photography, please reference the Image Reproduction Request Form to determine what information to include in your email. Please note that the Museum reserves the right to limit new photography based on the original material’s condition, storage location, size, copyright status, and other factors.

Purchase high-quality prints and gifts 

For high-quality prints and gifts featuring premium images from CHM’s collection, please browse our online PhotoStore.

Permission-only requests

If you already have the image(s) you require for an anticipated use, please be advised that you may still be required to secure a license to reproduce or distribute this content. If this is the case, please email [email protected] to obtain a quote for the appropriate usage license. In your email, please provide as much detail as possible regarding your proposed usage, along with the image number(s), if known.

FAQs

How much do image reproductions and/or permissions cost?

Why does the Museum charge reproduction and/or permission fees?

How long does the process take?

Does the Museum own copyright for its collections?

What if I have additional questions?

Audiovisual Reproductions

For reproductions of audiovisual materials (sound recordings, film, and video):

Where can I search for audiovisual materials?

How can I request a reproduction and/or permission to use it in my project?

How much does a reproduction and/or permissions cost?

How long does the process take?

Questions?

We’re happy to discuss your project or answer any questions you may have. The most efficient way to contact us is via email at [email protected]. We will do our best to respond to your inquiry as soon as possible. Our average response time is one to three business days.

Architectural Drawing Reproductions

For digital reproductions of oversized architectural plans and drawings:

Where do I search for architectural drawings or plans?

How can I request a reproduction?

How much do reproductions cost?

How long does the process take?

Questions?

We’re happy to discuss your project or answer any questions you may have. The most efficient way to contact us is via email at [email protected]. We will do our best to respond to your inquiry as soon as possible. Our average response time is one to three business days.

Photocopies

Requests for black-and-white paper photocopies of materials from our Prints and Photographs, Archives and Manuscripts, Architecture, and Library collections for personal or research use are handled by our Research Center staff. Please visit the Research Center’s page for more information, or email [email protected].

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