Copyright & Permissions Policy

Images on the Washington County Heritage Online (WCHO) web site are based on original historic photographs. These photographs are held by multiple participating cultural institutions in Washington County, Oregon. To publish any of the photographs on the WCHO web site, please contact the institution that owns the photograph for further information:

Frequently Asked Questions:

How do I cite a photograph from the WCHO web site?

The exact format of your citation will depend on which citation style you are using. Purdue University's OWL guide provides up-to-date instructions for citations in the most common styles. The basic MLA (8th ed.) format for citing a photograph from this site is:

PhotographerLastName, PhotographerFirstName. Title of the photograph. Date. Name of the Institution that owns the original photograph, City where the Institution is located, Oregon. Accessed Date.

Information that you do not know, such as the name of the photographer, generally should be left blank. For example, if you wanted to cite this photograph, "Cyrus Walker and Family", the citation in MLA format would be:

Cyrus Walker and Family. Circa 1860s. Pacific University Archives, Forest Grove, Oregon. Accessed Jan 2019.


Are there any usage fees for reproducing the photographs?

Each institution within WCHO sets its own policies for usage fees. Please see the contacts above for more information.


Are these photographs still protected by copyright?

For most of the photographs on this site, copyright will still be in force until 70 years after the death of the photographer, or if the photographer is unknown, until 120 years after the photograph was taken. See this chart for more information (please note that most WCHO photographs count as "unpublished works").


Do I need to get permission from the copyright holder to reproduce the photographs?

In some cases, yes. Some uses count as "fair use" and do not require permission. For some guidelines on what counts as fair use, see the U.S. Copyright Office Statement on Fair Use, or the Stanford Fair Use site.


Who owns the copyright to the photographs?

While WCHO institutions own the physical photographs that are reproduced on this site, they may or may not own the copyright to them. Copyright usually belongs to photographer. There are some exceptions to this rule, notably in the case of "works made for hire." WCHO institutions may be able to assist in determining who the copyright holder is.