U.S. Code of Federal Regulations
Regulations most recently checked for updates: Aug 10, 2020
Agencies must manage audiovisual, cartographic, and related records in accordance with parts 1220-1235. This part prescribes additional policies and procedures for managing audiovisual, cartographic, and related records to ensure adequate and proper documentation and authorized, timely, and appropriate disposition.
The authorities for this part are 44 U.S.C. 2904 and 3101.
(a) NARA incorporates certain material by reference into this part with the approval of the Director of the Federal Register under 5 U.S.C. 552(a) and 1 CFR part 51. To enforce any edition other than that specified in this section, NARA must publish a document in the
(b) American National Standards Institute (ANSI) and International Organization for Standards (ISO) standards. The following ANSI and ISO standards are available from the American National Standards Institute, 25 West 43rd St., 4th Floor, New York, NY 10036, phone number (212) 642-4900, or online at http://webstore.ansi.org.
(1) ISO 18906: 2000 (“ISO 18906”), Imaging Materials - Photographic Films - Specifications for Safety Film, First Edition, December 15, 2000, IBR approved for § 1237.26.
(2) ISO 18911: 2000 (“ISO 18911”), Imaging materials - Processed safety photographic films - Storage practices, First Edition, November 1, 2000, IBR approved for § 1238.20, IBR approved for §§ 1237.16 and 1237.18.
(3) ISO 18920: 2000 (“ISO 18920”), Imaging Materials - Processed Photographic Reflection Prints - Storage Practices, First Edition, July 15, 2000, IBR approved for § 1237.18.
(4) ANSI/AIIM TR34: 1996 (“ANSI/AIIM TR34”), Sampling Procedures for Inspection by Attributes of Images in Electronic Image Management and Micrographic Systems, May 13, 1996, IBR approved for § 1237.28.
(c) National Fire Protection Association (NFPA). The following standards are available from the National Fire Protection Association, 1 Batterymarch Park, P.O. Box 9109, Quincy, MA 02269-9101, phone number (617) 770-3000 or online at http://catalog.nfpa.org.
(1) NFPA 40-2007 (“NFPA 40-2007”), Standard for the Storage and Handling of Cellulose Nitrate Film, 2007, IBR approved for § 1237.30.
(d) Techstreet. The following standards are available from the standards reseller Techstreet, 3916 Ranchero Drive, Ann Arbor, MI 48108, phone number (800) 699-9277, or online at http://www.Techstreet.com.
(1) ISO 18902: 2001 (“ISO 18902”), Imaging Materials - Processed Photographic Films, Plates, and Papers - Filing Enclosures and Storage Containers, 2001, IBR approved for § 1237.16.
(2) ISO 18923: 2000 (“ISO 18923”), Imaging Materials - Polyester-Base Magnetic Tape - Storage Practices, First Edition, June 1, 2000, IBR approved for § 1237.18.
(3) ISO 18925: 2002 (“ISO 18925”), Imaging Materials - Optical Disc Media - Storage Practices, First Edition, June 1, 2002, IBR approved for § 1237.18.
(e) The following standards are not available from the original publisher or a standards reseller. To inspect the standards at a NARA location other than the NARA facility in College Park, MD, or the Office of the Federal Register, contact NARA's Regulations Comment Desk as provided in paragraph (a) of this section.
(1) ISO 2859-1: 1996 (“ISO 2859-1”), Sampling Procedures for Inspection by Attributes - Part 1: Sampling Plans Indexed by Acceptable Quality Level (AQL) for Lot-by-Lot Inspection, 1996, IBR approved for § 1237.28.
(2) ANSI/NAPM IT9.11-1993 (“ANSI/NAPM IT9.11-1993”), Imaging Media - Processed Safety Photographic Films - Storage, 1993, IBR approved for § 1237.16.
(a) See § 1220.18 of this subchapter for definitions of terms used throughout Subchapter B, including part 1237.
(b) As used in part 1237 -
Aerial photographic records means film-based images of the surface of the earth, of other planetary bodies, or of the atmosphere that have been taken from airborne vehicles or satellites. They include vertical and oblique aerial negative film taken from conventional aircraft as well as copy negatives, internegatives, rectified negatives, and annotated and other prints from these negatives. Also included are infrared, ultraviolet, multispectral, video, and radar imagery that has been converted to a film base. These records also include the relevant index system in whatever form it may exist such as mosaics, flight-line overlays or annotated maps, or electronic data bases capturing the latitude and longitude (or other coordinate-based location data) of individual aerial photographic center points.
Architectural and engineering records means graphic records that depict the proposed and actual construction of stationary structures, such as buildings, bridges, and canals as well as movable objects, such as ships, aircraft, vehicles, weapons, machinery, and equipment. These records are also known as design and construction drawings and include closely related indexes and written specifications.
Audiovisual means any pictorial or aural means of communicating information, e.g., photographic prints, negatives, slides, digital images, sound recordings, and moving images.
Audiovisual equipment means equipment used for recording, producing, duplicating, processing, broadcasting, distributing, storing, or exhibiting audiovisual materials or for providing any audiovisual services.
Audiovisual production means an organized and unified presentation, developed according to a plan or script, containing visual imagery, sound, or both, and used to convey information. An audiovisual production generally is a self-contained presentation.
Audiovisual records means records in pictorial or aural form, including still photographs and motion media (i.e., moving images whether on motion picture film or as video recordings), sound recordings, graphic works (e.g., printed posters), mixed media, and related finding aids and production files.
Cartographic records means graphic representations drawn to scale of selected cultural and physical features of the surface of the earth, of other planetary bodies, and of the atmosphere. They include maps, charts, photomaps, orthophotomaps and images, atlases, cartograms, globes, and relief models. Related records are those that are integral to the map-making process, such as field survey notes, geodetic controls, map history case files, source material, indexes, and finding aids.
Each Federal agency must manage its audiovisual, cartographic and related records as required in parts 1220 through 1235. In addition, agencies must:
(a) Prescribe the types of audiovisual, cartographic, and related records to be created and maintained. (See § 1235.42 of this subchapter for transfer requirements for permanent audiovisual records.)
(b) Create and maintain current inventories showing the location of all generations of audiovisual records and all cartographic and related records, especially those not maintained centrally by the agency.
For permanent audiovisual records, the following record elements must be created or acquired and preserved for transfer into the National Archives of the United States. (See § 1235.42 of this subchapter for transfer requirements for permanent audiovisual records.)
(a) Motion pictures. (1) Agency-sponsored or produced motion picture films (e.g., public information films) whether for public or internal use:
(i) Original negative or color original plus separate optical sound track;
(ii) Intermediate master positive or duplicate negative plus optical track sound track; and,
(iii) Sound projection print and video recording, if both exist.
(2) Agency-acquired motion picture films: Two projection prints in good condition or one projection print and one videotape.
(3) Unedited footage, outtakes and trims (the discards of film productions) that are properly arranged, labeled, and described and show unstaged, unrehearsed events of historical interest or historically significant phenomena:
(i) Original negative or color original; and
(ii) Matching print or videotape.
(b) Video recordings. (1) For analog videotapes, the original or earliest generation videotape using industrial-quality or professional videotapes for originals and a copy for reference.
(2) For video discs, the premaster video used to manufacture the video disc and two copies of the disc.
(c) Still pictures. (1) For analog black-and-white photographs, an original negative and a captioned print or the captioning information maintained in another file such as a data base if the file number correlation is clear. If the original negative is nitrate, unstable acetate, or glass based, a duplicate negative on a polyester base is needed.
(2) For analog color photographs, the original color negative, color transparency, or color slide; a captioned print of the original color negative and/or captioning information in another file such as a data base with a clear correlation to the relevant image; and a duplicate negative, or slide, or transparency.
(3) For slide sets, the original and a reference set, and the related audio recording and script.
(4) For other pictorial records such as posters, original art work, and filmstrips, the original and a reference copy.
(d) Digital photographic records. See § 1237.28 for requirements for digital photographs.
(e) Sound recordings. (1) Disc recordings:
(i) For electronic recordings, the origination recording regardless of form and two compact discs (CDs) or digital video disks (DVDs).
(ii) For analog disc recordings, the master tape and two disc pressings of each recording, typically a vinyl copy for playback at 33
(2) For analog audio recordings on magnetic tape (open reel, cassette, or cartridge), the original tape, or the earliest available generation of the recording, and a subsequent generation copy for reference.
(f) Finding aids and production documentation. (1) Existing finding aids such as data sheets, shot lists, continuities, review sheets, catalogs, indexes, list of captions, and other documentation that identifies the records.
(2) Production case files or similar files that include copies of production contracts, scripts, transcripts, and appropriate documentation bearing on the origin, acquisition, release, and ownership of the production.
§ 1237.14 - What are the additional scheduling requirements for audiovisual, cartographic, and related records?
The disposition instructions should also provide that permanent records be transferred to the National Archives of the United States within 5-10 years after creation (see also 36 CFR part 1235). See § 1235.42 of this subchapter for specifications and standards for transfer to the National Archives of the United States of audiovisual, cartographic, and related records.
Agencies must maintain appropriate storage conditions for permanent, long-term temporary or unscheduled audiovisual records:
(a) Ensure that audiovisual records storage facilities comply with 36 CFR part 1234.
(b) For the storage of permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled records, use audiovisual storage containers or enclosures made of non-corroding metal, inert plastics, paper products and other safe materials recommended in ISO 18902 and ISO 18911 (both incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3);
(c) Store originals and use copies (e.g., negatives and prints) separately, whenever practicable. Store distinct audiovisual record series separately from textual series (e.g., store poster series separately from other kinds of agency publications, or photographic series separately from general reference files). Retain intellectual control through finding aids, annotations, or other descriptive mechanisms;
(d) Store series of permanent and unscheduled x-ray films, i.e, x-rays that are not interspersed among paper records (case files), in accordance with § 1238.20 of this subchapter. Store series of temporary x-ray films under conditions that will ensure their preservation for their full retention period, in accordance with ANSI/PIMA IT9.11-1993 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3);
(e) Store posters and similar graphic works in oversize formats, in map cases, hanging files, or other enclosures that are sufficiently large or flexible to accommodate the records without rolling, folding, bending, or other ways that compromise image integrity and stability; and
(f) Store optical disks in individual containers and use felt-tip, water-based markers for disk labeling.
(a) Photographic film and prints. The requirements in this paragraph apply to permanent, long-term temporary, and unscheduled audiovisual records.
(1) General guidance. Keep all film in cold storage following guidance by the International Organization for Standardization in ISO 18911 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3). See also ISO 18920 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).
(2) Color images and acetate-based media. Keep in an area maintained below 40 degrees Fahrenheit with 20-40% relative humidity to retard the fading of color images and the deterioration of acetate-based media.
(b) Digital images on magnetic tape. For digital images stored on magnetic tape, keep in an area maintained at a constant temperature range of 62 degrees Fahrenheit to 68 degrees Fahrenheit, with constant relative humidity from 35% to 45%. See also the recommendations in ISO 18923 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3); and the requirements for electronic records storage in 36 CFR 1236.28.
(c) Digital images on optical media. For permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled digital images maintained on optical media (e.g., CDs, DVDs), use the recommended storage temperature and humidity levels stated in ISO 18925 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).
(a) Handle audiovisual records in accordance with commonly accepted industry practices.
(b) Protect audiovisual records, including those recorded on digital media or magnetic sound or video media, from accidental or deliberate alteration or erasure.
(c) If different versions of audiovisual productions (e.g., short and long versions or foreign-language versions) are prepared, keep an unaltered copy of each version for record purposes.
(d) Link audiovisual records with their finding aids, including captions and published and unpublished catalogs, inventories, indexes, and production files and similar documentation created in the course of audiovisual production. Establish and communicate agency-wide, clear captioning standards, procedures, and responsibilities.
(e) Maintain current and accessible documentation identifying creators of audiovisual products, their precise relationship to the agency, and the nature and status of copyright or other rights affecting the present and future use of items acquired from sources outside the agency. (See § 1222.32 of this subchapter for requirements to ensure agency ownership of appropriate contractor produced records.)
(f) Create unique identifiers for all audiovisual records (e.g., for digital files, use file naming conventions), that clarify connections between related elements (e.g., photographic prints and negatives, or original edited masters and dubbing for video and audio recordings), and that associate records with the relevant creating, sponsoring, or requesting offices.
(g) Maintain temporary and permanent audiovisual records separately.
(h) Require that personnel wear white lint-free cotton (or other approved) gloves when handling film.
§ 1237.22 - What are special considerations in the storage and maintenance of cartographic and related records?
(a) Maintain permanent and unscheduled cartographic, architectural, and engineering records in an environment that does not exceed 70 degrees Fahrenheit and with relative humidity under 50%.
(b) Create an identification scheme for each series and assign unique identification designations to each item within a series.
(c) Maintain lists or indexes for each series with cross-references to related textual records.
(d) Avoid interfiling separate series of maps, charts, or drawings, and file permanent cartographic and architectural records separately from temporary series unless hand-corrected versions have been systematically filed with other published maps in a central or master file.
(e) Avoid rolling and folding maps and drawings. Store permanent maps and drawings flat in shallow drawer map cases in acid-free folders.
(f) Do not laminate original oversize records. Consult NARA for preservation, storage, and treatment options, by mail at National Archives and Records Administration; Preservation Programs (RX); 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001.
§ 1237.24 - What are special considerations for storage and maintenance of aerial photographic records?
(a) Mark each aerial film container with a unique identification code to facilitate identification and filing.
(b) Mark aerial film indexes with the unique aerial film identification codes or container codes for the aerial film that they index. Also, file and mark the aerial indexes in such a way that they can easily be retrieved by area covered.
(a) For picture negatives and motion picture preprints (negatives, masters, and all other copies) of permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled records, use polyester base media and process in accordance with industry standards as specified in ISO 18906 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).
(1) Ensure that residual sodium thiosulfate (hypo) on newly processed black-and-white photographic film does not exceed 0.014 grams per square meter.
(2) Require laboratories to process film in accordance with this standard. Process color film in accordance with the manufacturer's recommendations.
(3) If using reversal type processing, require full photographic reversal; i.e., develop, bleach, expose, develop, fix, and wash.
(b) Avoid using motion pictures in a final “A & B” format (two precisely matched reels designed to be printed together) for the reproduction of excerpts or stock footage.
(c) Use only industrial or professional video and audio recording equipment, new and previously unrecorded magnetic tape stock and blank optical media (e.g., DVD and CD), for original copies of permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled recordings. Limit the use of consumer formats to distribution or reference copies or to subjects scheduled for destruction. Avoid using videocassettes in the VHS format for use as originals of permanent or unscheduled records.
(d) Record permanent, long-term, temporary, or unscheduled audio recordings on optical media from major manufacturers. Avoid using cassettes as originals for permanent records or unscheduled records (although they may be used as reference copies).
(e) For born-digital or scanned digital images that are scheduled as permanent or unscheduled, a record (or master) version of each image must be comparable in quality to a 35 mm film photograph or better, and must be saved in Tagged Image File Format (TIFF) or JPEG File Interchange Format (JFIF, JPEG). For more detailed requirements on image format and resolution, see § 1235.48(e) of this subchapter. For temporary digital photographs, agencies select formats that they deem most suitable for fulfillment of business needs.
Digital photographs, either originating in digital form (“born-digital”) or scanned from photographic prints, slides, and negatives, are subject to the provisions of this part and the requirements of 36 CFR part 1236, and NARA guidance for transfer of digital photographs located on the following NARA Web page - http://www.archives.gov/records-mgmt/initiatives/digital-photo-records.html. In managing digital photographs, agency and contractor personnel must:
(a) Schedule digital photographs and related databases as soon as possible for the minimum time needed for agency business and transfer the records promptly according to the disposition instructions on their records schedule.
(b) Select image management software and hardware tools that will meet long-term archival requirements, including transfer to the National Archives of the United States, as well as business needs. Request additional information and assistance from NARA, by mail at National Archives and Records Administration; Special Media Records Division (RDS); 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001, or by email at [email protected]
(c) When developing digital image storage strategies, build redundancy into storage systems, backing up image files through on-line approaches, off-line, or combinations of the two. (See also electronic storage requirements in § 1236.28 of this subchapter).
(d) For scanned digital images of photographic prints, slides, and negatives that are scheduled as permanent or unscheduled, document the quality control inspection process employed during scanning.
(1) Visually inspect a sample of the images for defects, evaluate the accuracy of finding aids, and verify file header information and file name integrity.
(2) Conduct the sample using a volume sufficiently large to yield statistically valid results, in accordance with one of the quality sampling methods presented in ANSI/AIIM TR34 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3). (See also ISO 2859-1 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).)
(e) For born-digital images scheduled as permanent, long-term temporary, or unscheduled, perform periodic inspections, using sampling methods or more comprehensive verification systems (e.g., checksum programs), to evaluate image file stability, documentation quality, and finding aid reliability. Agencies must also establish procedures for refreshing digital data (recopying) and file migration, especially for images and databases retained for five years or more.
(f) Designate a record set of images that is maintained separately from other versions. Record sets of permanent or unscheduled images that have already been compressed once (e.g., compressed TIFF or first-generation JPEG) must not be subjected to further changes in image size.
(g) Organize record images in logical series. Group permanent digital images separately from temporary digital images.
(h) Document information about digital photographic images as they are produced. For permanent or unscheduled images descriptive elements must include:
(1) An identification number;
(2) Information about image content;
(3) Identity and organizational affiliation of the photographer;
(4) Existence of any copyright or other potential restrictions on image use; and
(5) Technical data including file format and version, bit depth, image size, camera make and model, compression method and level, custom or generic color profiles (ICC/ICM profile), and, where applicable, Exchangeable Image File Format (EXIF) information embedded in the header of image files by certain digital cameras.
(i) Provide a unique file name to identify the digital image.
(j) Develop finding aids sufficiently detailed to ensure efficient and accurate retrieval. Ensure that indexes, caption lists, and assignment logs can be used to identify and chronologically cut-off block of images for transfer to the NARA.
(a) The nitrocellulose base, a substance akin to gun cotton, is chemically unstable and highly flammable. Agencies must handle nitrocellulose-base film (used in the manufacture of sheet film, 35 mm motion pictures, aerial and still photography into the 1950s) as specified below:
(1) Remove nitrocellulose film materials (e.g., 35mm motion picture film and large series of still pictures) from records storage areas.
(2) Notify NARA, by mail at National Archives and Records Administration; Special Media Records Division (RDS); 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001, or by email at [email protected] (for photographs) or [email protected] (for motion picture film), about the existence of nitrocellulose film materials for a determination of whether they may be destroyed or retained after a copy is made by the agency for transfer to NARA. If NARA appraises nitrate film materials as disposable and the agency wishes to retain them, the agency must follow the standard NFPA 40-2007 (incorporated by reference, see § 1237.3).
(3) Follow the packing and shipping of nitrate film as specified in Department of Transportation regulations (49 CFR 172.101, Hazardous materials table; 172.504, Transportation; 173.24, Standard requirements for all packages; and 173.177, Motion picture film and X-ray film - nitrocellulose base).
(b) Agencies must inspect cellulose-acetate film periodically for an acetic odor, wrinkling, or the presence of crystalline deposits on the edge or surface of the film that indicate deterioration. Notify NARA, by mail at National Archives and Records Administration; Special Media Records Division (RDS); 8601 Adelphi Road; College Park, MD 20740-6001, or by email at [email protected] (for photographs) or [email protected] (for motion picture film), immediately after inspection about deteriorating permanent or unscheduled audiovisual records composed of cellulose acetate so that they can be copied by the agency prior to transfer of the original and duplicate film to NARA.