Photo by George

The Commons

Help us catalog the world’s public photo archives.

The Commons Help us catalog the world’s public photo archives.

Welcome!

The key goal of The Commons is to share hidden treasures from the world's public photography archives.

Please help make the photographs you enjoy more discoverable by adding tags and leaving comments. Your contributions and knowledge make these photos even richer*

A random sprinkling of our participating institutions...

  • Riksarkivet (National Archives of Norway)
  • Schlesinger Library, RIAS, Harvard University
  • The Graduate Institute, Geneva
  • Museum of Hartlepool
  • Regionaal Archief Alkmaar (Public Domain)
  • UW Digital Collections
  • Australian National Maritime Museum on The Commons
  • State Library of New South Wales collection
  • Svenska litteratursällskapet i Finland
  • UBC Library Digitization Centre
  • Powerhouse Museum Collection
  • Mississippi Department of Archives and History
  • LSE Library
  • Fotoarkivet NTM
  • Provincial Archives of Alberta
  • National Library of Australia Commons
  • bibliothequedetoulouse
  • San Diego Air & Space Museum Archives
  • Nationaal Archief
  • Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
  • The National Archives UK
  • Deseronto Archives
  • UA Archives | Upper Arlington History
  • Galt Museum & Archives on The Commons
  • Directorate General of Press and Information
  • Internet Archive Book Images
  • Miami U. Libraries - Digital Collections
  • Local History & Archives, Hamilton Public Library
  • The Library of Congress
  • CDHS
  • Museum of Photographic Arts Collections
  • The Library of Virginia
  • Huron County Museum & Historic Gaol
  • JWA Commons
  • Law Society of Upper Canada Archives

A Commons Sampler

Merchants Quay, Newry
Merchants Quay, Newry
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Potatoes should be dug without delay
Potatoes should be dug without delay
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

"Street scene with advertising hoardings" but where? Corner of Summerhill and Langrishe Place!
"Street scene with advertising hoardings" but where?...
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Punch and Judy?
Punch and Judy?
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Main Street, Belturbet, Co. Cavan, 1990
Main Street, Belturbet, Co. Cavan, 1990
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Horse-drawn Omnibus, Westmoreland Street, Dublin
Horse-drawn Omnibus, Westmoreland Street, Dublin
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

View from Katarina Elevator, Stockholm, Sweden
View from Katarina Elevator, Stockholm, Sweden
from Swedish National Heritage Board

The Bridge, Athlone
The Bridge, Athlone
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Election night crowd, Wellington, 1931
Election night crowd, Wellington, 1931
from National Library NZ on The Commons

More about The Commons

A new way to share photos on Flickr

The Commons was launched on January 16 2008, when we released our pilot project in partnership with The Library of Congress. Both Flickr and the Library were overwhelmed by the positive response to the project! Thank you!

The program has two main objectives:

  1. To increase access to publicly-held photography collections, and
  2. To provide a way for the general public to contribute information and knowledge. (Then watch what happens when they do!)

FAQ

I work for a cultural heritage institution that would like to be a part of The Commons. How do we do that?

Please let us know you're interested by registering here. It helps a lot if you let us know some background about your institution, and direct us to any online photo collections you already have.

How can I get involved?

We've already seen fantastic contribution from the Flickr membership. Your tags and conversations about the content in The Commons has been wonderful! The best way to get involved is to add a tag or two to the photos you see, and if you happen to know anything else about the subject, by all means add a comment.

What's "no known copyright restrictions?"

This new rights statement is being contained to the institutions participating in The Commons, at the account level. It is a requirement for participation in the program that institutions may rightly claim "no known copyright restrictions" on the content they share. More information.

*Any Flickr member is able to add tags or comment on these collections. If you're a dork about it, shame on you. This is for the good of humanity, dude!!