Ask a Research Question: Contact Archives of American Gardens (AAG) staff at (preferred) or 202-633-5840. Please indicate the scope and purpose of your research and provide details about any specific information or archival holdings you are seeking.

Searching the Collections: Search SOVA (Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives) at SOVA provides descriptions and detailed inventories of thousands of primary resource collections maintained by archival units across the Smithsonian including the Archives of American Gardens. Researchers are encouraged to conduct searches in SOVA prior to contacting Archives staff.

Make a Research Appointment: Research appointments to view collections in person must be scheduled at least two weeks in advance to allow staff sufficient time to retrieve specific items related to your request. Please email (preferred) or call 202-633-5840 to make an appointment.

Location: The Archives of American Gardens is located in the Capital Gallery Building (West) at 600 Maryland Ave, SW, Washington, D.C., one block south of the National Mall on the corner of Maryland Avenue and 7th Street. Capital Gallery is located immediately outside the L’Enfant Metro station (Blue, Yellow, Silver, Green, and Orange subway lines) – Maryland Avenue/Smithsonian Museums exit. The Archives is located inside the headquarters for Smithsonian Gardens on the third floor (Suite 3300).

Rights and Reproductions: In accordance with the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, 17 U.S. Code § 107, AAG accepts the “fair use” of copyrighted material available on its website or collection database for non-commercial, educational and personal use. Please visit the Smithsonian Institution’s Terms of Use page for more information about allowable uses. Thousands of gardens images are available in the Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives. 

Please note that copyright or use restrictions may exist. It is incumbent upon the researcher to ascertain copyright status and for obtaining all necessary permissions from the photographer, garden owner, and/or any other rights holder before publishing any material from the Archives.

Any request that falls outside “fair use” for reproduction and permission to use an item in the collection must be submitted in writing and approved by the Archives of American Gardens.

Requesting Reproductions: To request digital reproductions of images not yet available online or high-resolution digital images for publication, please email The Archives may not be able to provide reproductions of certain large-format materials or fragile items.  

Low-resolution scan: First 3 images or a contact sheet of up to 15 35mm slides are free. $15 per subsequent image or contact sheet.
High resolution scan: $30 per image.
High resolution scan of plans or over-sized materials / rush orders: $60 per item.

Permission to Publish Images: To request permission to publish images from the Archives, please email Depending on the nature of the use, there may be a use fee charged. 

Researchers are required to use the following credit line when citing or publishing records from the Archives:
Smithsonian Institution, Archives of American Gardens, [Collection Name]. 

Any reproductions provided to a researcher should not be reproduced by or transferred to any other person or institution without the written permission of the Archives of American Gardens. Researchers are solely responsible for obtaining all necessary permissions from the photographer, garden owner, and/or any other rights holder before reproducing or publishing any material from Archives.

Payment: Any reproduction fee and/or use fee for the publication of images is required in advance. Payment may be made by credit card or check made out to Smithsonian Institution. Please allow at least two weeks to process your order.