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...

  • IWM Collections
  • Vancouver Public Library Historical Photographs
  • State Library of New South Wales collection
  • Powerhouse Museum Collection
  • Regionaal Archief Alkmaar Commons
  • California Historical Society Digital Collection
  • The National Archives UK
  • Keene and Cheshire County (NH) Historical Photos
  • State Library and Archives of Florida
  • NSW State Archives and Records
  • National Archives of Estonia
  • Tyne & Wear Archives & Museums
  • The Gallen-Kallela Museum
  • The Graduate Institute, Geneva
  • SMU Libraries Digital Collections
  • New York Public Library
  • LSE Library
  • Nationaal Archief
  • National Science and Media Museum
  • Public Record Office of Northern Ireland
  • Dundas Museum and Archives
  • Museum of Hartlepool
  • Bergen Public Library
  • National Library of Medicine - History of Medicine
  • LlGC ~ NLW
  • American Aviation Historical Society
  • The British Library
  • Internet Archive Book Images
  • The Library of Virginia
  • The Field Museum Library
  • The Finnish Museum of Photography
  • Royal Museums Greenwich
  • TXSTATE Library Digital Collections
  • NavyMedicine
  • Faculty of Music, Trinity Laban

A Commons Sampler

March 8, 1966
March 8, 1966
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Mmmmortimer's
Mmmmortimer's
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Farrar (LOC)
Farrar (LOC)
from The Library of Congress

Meet you under the clock at Clery's
Meet you under the clock at Clery's
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Woman sitting on bumper bar of a car at Warwick Farm racecourse
Woman sitting on bumper bar of a car at Warwick Farm racecourse
from Powerhouse Museum Collection

Chicks and Ducks in Galway
Chicks and Ducks in Galway
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

Market Square, Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow, late 19th century
Market Square, Bagenalstown, Co. Carlow, late 19th century
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

What? Where? Why?
What? Where? Why?
from National Library of Ireland on The Commons

A wet Angel Place, Sydney, 1930s / Sam Hood
A wet Angel Place, Sydney, 1930s / Sam Hood
from State Library of New South Wales collection

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!!