Our Historical Images
Developed and managed by the Maine Historical Society (MHS), Vintage Maine Images (VMI) is an online shopping source for over 11,000 historical images. Images are from the collections of the Maine Historical Society as well as from hundreds of Contributing Partners across Maine and New England. Topics cover all aspects of life and locations in New England, from the age of exploration to the present. Examples of images include photographs, maps, letters, broadsides, postcards, original works on paper, architectural drawings, and other graphic material and artifacts. Start your search for images or learn more about our historical images.
VMI sells reproductions of original historical material in the forms of high-resolution digital image files and archival photographic prints. Digital files and prints offered for personal use are great for home and office décor, family history projects and genealogy, and other projects not for publication. We offer image-licensing options to use our images for non-profit and commercial use. Licensing can be purchased to use our images in books, magazines and other publications, films and television broadcast, websites, advertising, commercial décor, and any special project you have. Learn more about licensing.
Visit our Customer Service page for information on our services, how to contact us, help finding images, FAQs, and more.
High-Resolution Digital Files
- Digital files are in JPG format with minimal compression. Because we offer such high resolution scans, the effects of compression are insignificant.
- Color files are approximately 40 Mega Byte (MB) and are in RGB format (some black and white files are in Grayscale format and are 13 MB files).
- You can translate it to TIFF format or CMYK to use for printing, or you can keep it a JPG and downsample it to 72 dpi for web uses.
- A 40 MB file roughly corresponds with these print sizes
- 300 dpi at 11" x 14"
- 450 dpi at 8" x 10"
- 800 dpi at 4" x 5"
- 1200 dpi at 1" x 1.5"
Please note that some image files (of oversized or three dimensional historical items) were created with a digital camera rather than a flatbed scanner and may not meet the above standards. These files may be smaller in file size. If you need a file larger than what you see online, contact our Image Services Coordinator to discuss reproduction options.
- Our digital files are lightly edited to appear as close to the original as possible on our monitors, which may differ significantly from yours. This editing includes tonal levels, brightness/contrast, color adjustments, cropping, and rotation.
- Scans are not edited to remove blemishes from the original documents, and sharpening filters are not applied. Please keep in mind that the historical items you see online may be fragile, worn, stained, torn, or otherwise physically altered from its original state; we do not correct for these natural occurrences.
- High-resolution digital files that you purchase will not have the watermark that appears on the web site. The JPG files will be available for downloading immediately upon purchase.
- During checkout, you can opt to download the digital files from our website, or to purchase a CD which will be shipped to you.
- VMI offers archival print reproduction of images purchased through our website, or through our image services department.
- Digital print reproductions are created by our Image Services Coordinator at Maine Historical Society.
- Print reproductions are purchased with the agreement that it will be used for personal reasons only. Prints for commercial décor are available; contact us to discuss options.
- Print sizes are based upon the papers we have available, and the size of the print you order reflects the paper size we carry. The size of the print you order may not be the exact size of the image on paper as you receive it; our historical images vary in size and are not cropped to meet any standard size. Do not count on the size you order to meet framing and matting standards. For example, you may order an 8.5" x 11" print, and receive an image that is 7.9" x 10.6" on 8.5" x 11" paper.
- The size you see on the image detail page reflects the image file dimensions at 300 dpi. We can make reproductions that are smaller, equal to, and larger than the original material.
- We offer a low-cost print option of a study print that is printed on 8.5" x 11" non-archival paper on HP Color Laser Jet printer. Study prints are $5.
- Contact us with questions about prints, rush services, sizes, or to request additional sizes not offered on our website.
About our Printer, Inks, and Paper
- Prints are created with an Epson Stylus PRO 3800 inkjet printer, which uses exclusively engineered Epson Archival Inks and MicroCrystal Encapsulation technology. The tiny 0.1-micron ink particles offer a wide color gamut and fine shadow detail, dazzling highlights, and superior fill in solid areas.
- Prints are resin coated photographic paper with a luster, or pearl, finish.
- The photographic reproduction quality is produced with an archive life of over 200 years of lightfastness. To achieve maximum quality of your prints, do not place them in front of direct sunlight, or in extreme temperatures. MHS does not guarantee the archival life of your print reproduction.
- If you are interested in photocopies of material from Maine Historical Society collections, contact Research Services.