Voices from the Days of Slavery

Rights and Reproductions

Copyright Restrictions

The Library of Congress is not aware of any U.S. copyright protection (see Title 17 U.S.C.) or any other restrictions on the materials in Voices from the Days of Slavery: Former Slaves Tell Their Stories, except as noted below. The Library of Congress provides access to these materials strictly for educational and research purposes. The written permission of the copyright owners and/or other rights holders (such as holders of publicity and/or privacy rights) is required for distribution, reproduction, or other use of protected items beyond that allowed by fair use or other statutory exemptions.

Responsibility for making an independent legal assessment of an item and securing any necessary permissions ultimately rests with those persons desiring to use the item(s). Users should consult the catalog information that accompanies each item for specific information. The catalog data provide the details known to the Library of Congress regarding the item in question and may assist users in making an independent assessment of the legal status of these items as related to their desired uses. See American Memory, Copyright, and Other Restrictions and Privacy and Publicity Rights for additional information and restrictions.

While the Library is not aware of any copyright in the materials in this collection, users should be aware of possible rights particularly in the underlying works in the sound recordings. As is often the case with materials collected in the course of ethnographic field research, it may be difficult or impossible to identify specific speakers or singers included in sound recordings. It is also often difficult or impossible to identify specific songs sung by participants sufficiently to perform a comprehensive assessment of the copyright status of underlying musical rights in lyrics or compositions. The Library of Congress has researched this Collection to ascertain any possible legal rights embodied in the materials in the Collection. While we have been unable to identify any copyright in the recordings provided online here, we stress that the Collection is being made available in American Memory strictly for educational, noncommercial uses. The staff of the American Folklife Center is eager to learn more about these materials and would like to hear from individuals or institutions that have information about them or have additional information about their history. Contact them with any information at:

Email: folklife@loc.gov Library of Congress

American Folklife Center
101 Independence Avenue, SE
Washington, D.C. 20540-4610

The following materials are included with permission. Please contact the American Folklife Center for additional information where contact information is not provided. Thanks to:

The John Benjamins Publishing Company for generously allowing the Library the use of several transcripts from the book The Emergence of Black English-Text and Commentary, edited by Guy Bailey, Natalie Maynor, and Patricia Cukor-Avila (Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Co., 1991; ISBN 1-55619-161-8).

The John Benjamins Publishing Company for generously allowing the Library the use of the photograph of Archibald A. Hill from First Person Singular: Papers from the Conference on an Oral Archive for the History of American Linguistics, edited by Boyd H. Davis and Raymond O'Cain (Amsterdam Studies in the Theory and History of Linguistic Science III: Studies in the History of Linguistics, vol. 21; Amsterdam: John Benjamins Publishing Co., 1980; ISBN 90-272-4502-9).

The Polk County (Florida) Democrat, for permission to use its photograph of Charlie Smith.

The Delta Kappa Gamma Society International, for permission to use its photograph of Ruby Terrill Lomax.

The Wisconsin State Journal for permission to use its photograph of Guy Lowman.

Roosevelt University, for permission to use its photograph of Lorenzo Dow Turner.

The Towson, Maryland, The Jeffersonian for permission to use its photograph of a newspaper article about Fountain Hughes.

The mission of the Library of Congress is to make its resources available and useful to the Congress and the American people. Through its Web sites, the Library is offering broad public access to a wide range of information, including historical materials that may contain offensive language or negative stereotypes. Such materials must be viewed in the context of the relevant time period.

How to Order Audio Reproductions

It is usually possible to order copies of unpublished field recordings from the Archive of Folk Culture collections. In most cases, permissions are not required if you are ordering copies of recordings for private or research purposes, unless the performer was a commercial artist during his or her lifetime. If the recordings are to be used for profit or non-profit publication, (i.e., film, radio or television broadcast, CD, or CD-ROM), then you must obtain written permission or document your good-faith attempts to do so.

The Library does not retain rights regarding the use of recordings in its collections; all such performance rights remain with the performers or their estates. Upon receiving your request, Archive reference staff will consult our files to see whether we have records of previous attempts to contact those performers or their estates. We recommend that you send a certified, return-receipt-requested letter to the address that you find or which we supply. If the letter is returned unopened, please forward it (still unopened) to us as proof of your good-faith effort to contact the appropriate persons. Please keep track of all contact attempts that you make. That information kept in our files will constitute documentation of your efforts.

Individuals and companies who wish to publish Archive recordings are advised to send a letter indicating their intention to set aside an appropriate amount, comparable to fees paid to license other such recordings, to cover costs if an appropriate claimant steps forward at a later date. This letter will document the individual's or company's good-faith attempt to honor performance rights.

After contacting the American Folklife Center Reference Committee to identify specific selections to be duplicated, audio requestors will be referred to the Public Services Office of the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. The Public Services Office serves as the business arm of the MBRS Magnetic Recording Laboratory, and, in addition to other outreach services, operates a fee-for-service operation for the duplication of audio and moving-image materials

Ordering Procedure

If you wish to obtain audio copies of material from the Archive of Folk Culture collections: Please include your street address, daytime telephone number, and fax number. Indicate the format on which you would like your copies made (e.g., audio cassette, CD, open reel) as well as a statement about how the copies will be used.

Submit your written request to the Reference Committee of the American Folklife Center at the following address:

American Folklife Center
c/o Reference Committee
Library of Congress
101 Independence Avenue, S.E.
Washington, D.C. 20540-4610
email address: folklife@loc.gov

American Folklife Center Reference Committee staff will then advise you of any rights restrictions requiring written permission before the audio duplication can proceed.

Upon settling permissions issues, your request will be forwarded to the Recording Lab's Public Services Office, which will mail or fax you an ORDER FOR PHONODUPLICATION SERVICES form listing your order and the cost. Prepayment is required based on the cost estimate. The customer is liable for additional charges should any be incurred.

Complete the Order Form and return it along with your payment by check made out to Library of Congress, MBRS Division, or a money order in U.S. dollars. Rush requests should be sent via FedEx, DHL, UPS, or other courier.

Library of Congress
Motion Picture, Broadcasting, and Recorded Sound Division
Public Services Office
101 Independence Avenue, SE
Washington, D.C. 20540-4690

(Note: International orders require prepayment by check drawn on a U.S. bank or international money order in U.S. dollars.)

The turn-around time for standard service is typically four to six weeks. Rush service guarantees that your order will be completed within seven working days. The turn-around time for either service begins when payment has been received. Shipping costs must be paid by the customer. (If you have a Fedex, DHL, UPS, or other courier account, you may include your account number on the Order Form and waive the shipping charge noted in the cost estimate.)

If you have any questions specifically regarding costs and ordering procedures, please contact the Public Services Office at (202) 707-5623 or fax (202) 707-2371.

Audio Transfer Rates

Effective April 1, 2002

All audio copies are made in the Library's Recording Laboratory. Ordinarily, ten 78-rpm sides or one LP can be copied in an hour. Special recording services are arranged through the Public Services Office. Hourly rates are as follows:

Standard Duplication Rate $109.00/hr
Rush Duplication Rate $218.00/hr
Minimum Charge: 30 minutes
(with 15-minute increments thereafter)
$ 54.50
Simultaneous Cassette Dubs $ 8.00/hr
(plus tape stock)

Stock Charges

10-inch open reel $ 17.00
7-inch open reel $ 5.50
R-DAT Cassette (120 minutes) $ 5.50
R-DAT Cassette (60 minutes) $ 4.50
C-90 Cassette $ 1.50
C-60 Cassette $ 1.00
C-30 Cassette $ 1.00
3/4" Digital (75 minutes) $ 36.00
3/4" Digital (60 minutes) $ 25.00
CD Recordable $ 1.50
Magnetic Optical Disk (2 hours @24 bits) $ 88.00