Collection Use Policies and Guidelines

The Archives of African American Music and Culture welcomes all Indiana University faculty, staff and students, as well as visiting researchers and the general public. Since the AAAMC is a closed-stack, non-circulating collection, materials are only available for use within the Reading Room during posted hours. We strongly encourage all researchers to contact AAAMC staff in advance of their visit in order to ensure access to desired materials.

Because the collection includes many unique and rare items, the following regulations apply to the use of all materials:

  1. All visitors are required to complete a Patron Registration Form, providing name, contact information, and research topic. A photo ID may also be required to use specific materials, including headphones.
  2. All requested materials are retrieved by AAAMC staff.  No items may be removed from the Reading Room. Selected published materials (CDs, DVDs, etc.) may be borrowed by IU teaching faculty for a 48 hour period, with prior approval of AAAMC staff.
  3. Coats, briefcases, backpacks, parcels, cameras, and recording devices are not permitted in the research area and must be left at the registration desk. Laptop computers may be brought into the AAAMC and used at the discretion of the AAAMC staff (computers may not be used to record, playback or duplicate archival materials).
  4. Food and beverages are not permitted in the Reading Room.
  5. No ink of any kind may be used in the Reading Room; use pencils only. Marking, erasing, or otherwise altering AAAMC materials is prohibited. Do not use adhesive- backed notes to mark pages.
  6. Patrons are asked to handle materials with clean hands; the staff will provide gloves to be worn when handling photographs and other fragile materials.
  7. All archival materials must be handled carefully and remain on the surface of the table. Archival materials circulate one box at a time. Please remove only one folder at a time and keep the papers and folders in their existing order. Do not lean or press on archival materials. Do not place open books or other bound volumes face down on the table.
  8. Persons requesting access to restricted materials must contact the person or agency imposing the restrictions. The AAAMC cannot permit access to these materials without written authority. Likewise, access to unprocessed collections is not permitted.
  9. Patrons agree not to publish any portion of the materials without the written permission of the AAAMC and the copyright holder. Please refer to the Rights and Permissions section below for further information.

Rights and Permissions

Researchers must submit a written request for permission to reproduce or publish material held by the Archives of African American Music and Culture. “Permission to Publish” forms are available upon request and require specific information including: call number or collection name; box and folder numbers, if known; name of author or creator; title and date of the item; and the title/publisher of forthcoming printed work, electronic publication, or media presentation in which AAAMC materials will be quoted, published, or reproduced. Brief quotations from text that fall within the fair use guidelines of the United States Copyright law do no require written permission from the AAAMC. Some publication projects may be subject to a use or licensing fee.

In most cases, the AAAMC holds owns only the physical item, not the literary rights or copyright, and therefore assumes no responsibility for violations of such rights or for any other legal issues resulting from the use or publication of the items. It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure permission from the appropriate rights holders in order to quote, publish, or reproduce items from the AAAMC’s collections. Whenever possible, the AAAMC will provide the names and addresses of copyright holders. Researchers assume sole responsibility for any infringement of the literary rights, copyrights, or any other rights which pertain to these materials and shall indemnify Indiana University and the AAAMC against any claim, demand, cost or expense related to any infringement of rights that may result from the use or publication of the material held by the AAAMC.

If permission to publish is granted, credit must be given to the Indiana University Archives of African American Music and Culture and, when specified, the name of the collection. Researchers agree to provide the AAAMC with a copy of any publication which relies heavily upon its collections.