Copying services

How can I get copies of archival material?

The Municipal Archives provides copying services subject to copyright legislation, donor agreements, and the physical condition of the records. Copies are provided for research and private study; other use may require authorization from the copyright owner. 

If you can specifically identify the material required, contact the archives with your copy request. Staff can advise to get the best copy suited to your needs.

If you are in the Archives’ Reading Room, you can use a hand-held camera, or the microfilm scanner/printer to make your own copies (digital or paper) for research and private study; otherwise all copying is done by Municipal Archives staff or approved external services.

If you see material on the Municipal Archives’ database, website, or albums in the Flickr Commons , you may share or download it for personal research and enjoyment. See terms for use beyond research and private study (below) for further information. This material has no known copyright restrictions, unless noted with the item (e.g. that the photographer be acknowledged). This indicates that one of the following is true:

  • the material is in the public domain 
  • the Municipality owns the copyright and is willing to make the images available for research and personal enjoyment 
  • the copyright holder has given permission for the material to be used
  • the Archives has been unable to locate the copyright holder (If you are a rights holder and wish to contest the use of specific material, please contact the Archives.)

Images provided online are sized for web-viewing; higher-resolution copies can be requested. 

Copying fees

You can pay for your copies by cash, cheque, or money order at the Municipal Archives; or with debit or charge cards in person at a Customer Service Centre

  • photocopies (up to 11” x 17”): $0.50 per page, $0.60 per page for more than 50 pages
  • print-outs from microfilm or computer: $0.25 per page if done by researcher; $15 per hour if done by staff
  • large-format scans (maps, plans from paper or microfilm): $15 per item
  • scans of photos, maps, plans (under 11” x 17”): $12 per image ($10 per image for more than 10 items)
  • scans from microfilm: no charge if done by researcher; $15 per hour if done by staff
  • scans from texts: $15 per hour of staff time 
  • audio-visual material: outsourced + $10 handling fee; if already digitized audio is $20/item, video is $40/item

Harmonized sales tax of 15% applies to all fees.

Courier service is at the expense of the researcher.

Students with valid school identification receive a 10% discount.

Use beyond research and private study

If you plan to use copies obtained from the Municipal Archives for a project beyond research or private study (e.g. a publication, promotional item, or website), you must submit a Permission to Publish Formto archives@halifax.ca or in person at the Municipal Archives. 

Archives staff will notify you of copyright issues; however it is your responsibility to determine and satisfy copyright and other use restrictions before copying, transmitting, or making other use of protected items.

Archives staff will determine if commercial use requires a fee. Use fees help fund ongoing efforts to care for our collection.

Publication and use fees

  • educational, non-commercial, or not-for-profit use: no fee
  • commercial publication (books, periodicals, electronic publications, websites, CD-ROMs): $15.00 for cover placement, $10.00 for interior 
  • commercial broadcasting (video, photos, audio recordings): $50 per image or per minute
  • commercial advertising, merchandising, or display: $50–$100 depending on use or quantity

Citation Guidance

Projects making use of archival records are asked to credit the Halifax Municipal Archives and refer to the retrieval code provided with the copy, so that future researchers can request the same material.  Ideally a full citation is given in this format:

  • <title of item>, <date>, <series> <retrieval code> - Halifax Municipal Archives
  • eg.  City Hall, 1929, City Clerk's Office photograph 102-5A.23 - Halifax Municipal Archives

For social media posts,  in addition to the citation, please tag us:

  • Facebook:  @hfxgov #hfxarchives
  • Twitter: @hfxgov #hfxarchives
  • Instagram:  @hfxmoments #hfxarchives