Portraits by Carl Van Vechten


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Rights and Reproductions

Per the instrument of gift, "for a period of 20 years from the date of this Instrument [1966], none of the photographs contained in said collection may be sold, reproduced, published or given away in any form whatsoever except with my [Saul Mauriber, Photographic Executor for Van Vechten] express permission in writing." This restriction expired in 1986. In 1998 the Library's Publishing Office was contacted by Bruce Kellner, Successor Trustee for the Van Vechten estate, who disputes Mr. Mauriber's authority in executing the Instrument of Gift. Upon review of the relevant materials, the Library continues to believe that the photographs are in the public domain. However, patrons are advised that Mr. Kellner has expressed his concern that use of Van Vechten's photographs "preserve the integrity" of his work, i.e, that photographs not be colorized or cropped, and that proper credit is given to the photographer. Privacy and publicity rights may apply.

Credit Line: Library of Congress, Prints & Photographs Division, Carl Van Vechten Collection, [reproduction number, e.g., LC-USZ62-54231]

For guidance about compiling full citations consult How to Cite Electronic Sources on the Learning Page.

See our Legal Notices for additional information and restrictions.

Obtaining Photographic Reproductions

Photographic copies of Prints and Photographs Division items found in American Memory can be ordered from the Library of Congress Photoduplication Service. These reproductions (prints or transparencies) are made from high quality negatives or transparencies.

Take down the following information to place an order:

  • If the "REPRODUCTION NUMBER" field appears in the descriptive information, note down the letters and numbers that appear there and the type of negative (glass or film) mentioned in parentheses.
  • If there is no "REPRODUCTION NUMBER" in the descriptive information, take down the letters and numbers that appear in the "CALL NUMBER" field. (The original will have to be photographed by the Photoduplication Service.)
  • Note down a brief caption for the item.

Contact the Photoduplication Service to place an order (telephone: 202-707-5640). Orders are accepted by mail and by fax. The Photoduplication Service estimates that it takes 3-6 weeks to complete an order.