The New York Academy of Medicine Library is open to the public by appointment; contact a librarian (see sidebar for contact information and hours).


  • All patrons must make an appointment to use library materials. Please contact us at least 24 hours before your desired appointment time.
  • Researchers must check their coats, umbrellas, books, and large bags with the librarian.
  • Food and drink are not permitted in the reading rooms.
  • Only note cards, paper, and items necessary for research, including laptops and tablets, are allowed in the reading rooms.
  • Readers may photograph materials for research purposes. Flash may not be used. Please see our policies on publishing reproductions of library materials.
  • The New York Academy of Medicine reserves the right to inspect all parcels and bags brought into the building.

Library Item Requests

  • The majority of the library collection is in closed stacks. Patrons do not have direct access to materials for browsing and retrieval.
  • Requests for materials should be made in advance by email or telephone (see sidebar for contact information), including a list of items you wish to consult.
  • Requests made on site have an average wait time of 20 minutes prior to receiving items.
  • Patrons may request up to 10 items per day. If using a manuscript collection, only one box may be consulted at a time. Access to additional items is at the discretion of the librarian.

Use of Materials

  • Only pencils and paper, laptops or tablets are permitted at the reader tables for note-taking. Pencils and acid-free marker strips are available in the reading rooms.
  • Materials should be handled with great care. Do not rest papers, other books, or hands on the items while working; books should not be held in one's lap, against the edge of a table, or on other books. Use the book stands, cradles, and weights provided. Hands should be clean before materials are handled.
  • Librarians reserve the right to offer readers access to full-text digital surrogates or other facsimiles, if available, if original materials are too fragile for use.
  • If using a manuscript collection, please keep it in order. When you remove a folder from a box, please place a marker in the box in the appropriate location. Do not mark, fold, or disarrange the papers or use them as a base for writing notes. Do not attempt to remove clips or staples from any of the pages; ask for assistance.
  • Inform the librarian if you are leaving the room for any reason. Under no circumstances may material be removed from the reading rooms.
  • Please notify the librarian if any damaged or disordered material is discovered.
  • Readers should inform the librarian when they are ready to leave. The items will then be checked against the request forms.
  • The librarians are available to researchers for consultation with regard to research topics, for assistance with catalogs, and to answer any questions. Please don't hesitate to ask.

Copy and Print Services

  • Library patrons may take pictures, with a camera or phone without flash, of books, manuscripts and other items for personal research use at no charge. Librarians may refuse patrons permission to photograph materials if doing so would cause damage to fragile items.
  • Many pre-1923 materials are freely available as full-text digital surrogates.  Patrons are encouraged to use available surrogates instead of asking for scans of the Library’s copies. Librarians can help patrons locate digital surrogates. 
  • There are no publicly available photocopy machines in the library. Library staff members make all reproductions. See below for fees and additional information.
Copy and Print Fees
ServiceUp to 25 pagesAdditional Pages
  • Both reference photocopies and high-resolution reproductions are available. Additional fees may apply for high-resolution images.  
  • A maximum of 50 continuous pages from any book or journal may be reproduced. If the copies constitute the majority of a work in copyright, we may allow fewer than 50 continuous pages.
  • Permission to reproduce materials does not constitute permission to publish. Please consult the Rights and Permissions policy for detailed information about permission to publish, and for information about fees and digital reproductions.

    Computers and Wireless

    Library computers may be used for research only.

    The New York Academy of Medicine provides free wifi access for members and guests. To access wifi on your device (computer, tablet, smartphone, etc.) connect to the Academy network. Login information is posted in the reading rooms.

    Disclaimers and Limitations

    • Wireless Internet access is provided with no guarantee and no warranty.
    • Data transfer through the wireless network is not encrypted and may be monitored, captured, or altered by others. You are responsible for the safety and security of the data you send and receive over this network.
    • The New York Academy of Medicine Library assumes no responsibility for the protection of personal patron equipment or for laptop configurations, security, or data files.
    • The Library is not able to provide technical support and is free of responsibility in regard to patrons' computers or other equipment used in accessing the wireless network.
    • At its sole discretion, The New York Academy of Medicine Library may terminate this public access at any time and without prior notice.
    • Printing is not available via the wireless network.
    • Self-provided headphones will be required for patrons listening to audio content inside the Library.
    • In using the free wireless Internet access, the patron agrees to release, indemnify, and hold harmless, The New York Academy of Medicine Library Board, administration, employees and any affiliate, from any damage that may result from the use of the network.
    • The Internet and its available resources may contain material of a controversial nature. No one is permitted to access obscenity or child pornography in the library or to use the Internet for any illegal purpose. Staff will actively intervene when they observe such behavior or it is brought to their attention.

    Rights and Permissions

    Guidelines for Granting and Securing Permission to Publish for Materials Held at The New York Academy of Medicine Library

    Permission to publish materials must be obtained in writing from the New York Academy of Medicine Library.


    1. All requests for permission to publish reproductions of materials held in the Academy Library must be submitted in writing to the Reference Librarian for Historical Collections with a clear and detailed explanation of intended use. Each request should include the author, title, publisher, anticipated date of publication and the size of the print run. For non-print works, the request should include the anticipated date of appearance.

    2. Permission to reproduce materials copyrighted or owned by The New York Academy of Medicine is limited to one-time, non-exclusive use in a book, periodical, newspaper, or the production of a television program or motion picture. The Academy Library acknowledges that as the world of publishing changes publishers sometimes request to use images in additional products, such as electronic editions and websites, associated with the publication of a particular item. Arrangements can be made for reproductions that are published in multiple formats at the same time. Use beyond the original terms of the agreement (such as the publication of a new edition of a book) requires a new permission to use request.

    3. The collection of the Academy Library contains materials for which the Academy does not control the rights of reproduction. Applicants seeking permission to publish these materials must assume responsibility for identifying the holder of copyright and for securing the appropriate permission.

    4. Each published image should carry the credit statement “Courtesy of The New York Academy of Medicine Library.”

    5. The Library requests a complimentary copy of each publication in which an image from the collections appears.

    6. Permission requests are processed as quickly as possible, but normally require a minimum of two weeks.

    7. The Library reserves the right to refuse any request and to impose such conditions as it may deem advisable in order to protect the interests of the Library and its materials.


    For non-profit organizations and individuals, a fee of $50.00 will be assessed for one-time, non-exclusive use of each image to which the Library holds reproduction rights or a permission to use fee will be assessed for each image that is part of the Library's collection. For commercial organizations, a fee of $100.00 will be assessed. Reduced fees may be negotiated for individual requests involving multiple images. Fees for the use of images cover both the time involved to research images and the work involved in creating the reproductions themselves.