The Church History Library assists those who plan to publish the results of their research. The following information, which includes citation tips and guidance for securing necessary intellectual property permissions, will help you properly use sources from the Church History Library in your publication. Please note that “publishing” includes any physical or digital distribution of materials, including books and articles as well as posting online in public forums, blogs, and websites.
When do I need permission to use materials from the Church History Library in a publication?
Each bibliographic record in the Church History Catalog has a copyright statement indicated in the “Rights” field for each item (see screenshot below). The five variations require different permissions, as follows:
1. In Copyright – Owned by Intellectual Reserve, Inc. When the use rights are known to belong to Intellectual Reserve, Inc., you may request permission to use the item by contacting the Intellectual Property Office.
2. In Copyright – Licensed to Intellectual Reserve, Inc. When the use rights are known to be licensed to Intellectual Reserve, Inc., you may request permission to use the item by contacting the Intellectual Property Office.
3. In Copyright – Other Rights Holder. When the rights belong to another rights holder, you will have to request permission of the rights holder.
4. Copyright Not Evaluated. When the use rights are unknown, you may request an inquiry into the rights’ status by using our online Ask Us service. While we strive to respond to queries within 3 to 5 business days, depending on the nature, complexity, and age of the item, fulfillment of your request may take several weeks.
5. No Known Copyright. Materials in the public domain are marked “No known copyright.” This designation means that, as far as our researchers can determine, there are no restrictions on using the source in a publication. Nevertheless, you bear the ultimate responsibility of ensuring that the material is not subject to copyright.
For information on rights statements and permissions, please see “Information Regarding Rights to Use Materials in the Church History Catalog.” For additional help identifying which collections require permission for use, please ask a library consultant for help via our online Ask Us service.
How do I obtain permission to use Church-owned/licensed materials in my publication?
The Church’s Intellectual Property Office grants permission to publish Church-owned/licensed materials from the Church History Library. (The Church History Library does not make these decisions.) To obtain approval to use Church-owned materials, first find the item(s) in the Church History Catalog that you would like to use, then note the following information from the record: location in the catalog, URL, title, call number, box number, folder number, etc. (see screenshot below) Use this information to submit a request to the Intellectual Property Office using the Permission to Use Church-owned Content site. After your request is received, the Intellectual Property Office will respond to your inquiry. Bear in mind that receiving copyright permission could take 45 days from the date your request is submitted.
Use this information to submit a request to the Intellectual Property Office using the Permission to Use Church-owned Content site. After your request is received, the Intellectual Property Office will respond to your inquiry. Bear in mind that receiving copyright permission could take 45 days from the date your request is submitted.If you cannot locate your desired item in the Church History Catalog, or if you would like assistance requesting permission from the Intellectual Property Office, contact a library consultant to assist you using our online Ask Us service.
How do I obtain a copy of a library item to use in my publication?
Many of the collections in the Church History Catalog have been scanned at a very high resolution suitable for nearly all publications. If a digitized image of your desired item is available in the Church History Catalog, simply download the item and cite the source appropriately, crediting “Church History Library, Salt Lake City” as a professional courtesy. (The library’s online Citation Guide contains additional information on how to cite our collections.)
If your desired item has not yet been digitized, please use our online Ask Us service to request assistance with submitting a digitization request.
In the rare circumstance that you require an image with a higher resolution than the version available in the catalog, please use our Ask Us service to request assistance. If the image is owned or licensed by the Church, please attach the permission letter received from the Intellectual Property Office.
If you are uncertain whether you need an image with higher resolution than the catalog version, please contact a library consultant via our Ask Us service. Also, remember to select your images early in the research process. Requests for digital images scanned at the highest resolution may require an additional two to three weeks beyond the 45 days often needed to receive copyright permission.
How do I cite items in the Church History Library collections?
The Library has published a citation guide to help patrons and scholars cite Church History Library collections accurately so they will be easier to find by their readers.
If you have any questions throughout this process, please don’t hesitate to Ask Us!