Internet Archive

The Internet Archive

Browse the Internet Archive's Image Collection  -- This library contains digital images uploaded by Archive users which range from maps to astronomical imagery to photographs of artwork. Many of these images are available for free download.


Google Images

Some things to think about before using images from Google:  
You've probably used Google Image Search before.  Like its big brother, Google Search, GIS is quick and easy to use, and more often than not you can find the image you're looking for without too much effort.   However, because it searches for image names and contextual words on the basis of popularity, results tend to be uneven. 
Additionally, images from websites indexed by Google are often small, poorly scanned, have been altered in some way, or are in violation of copyright, making them inappropriate for use. 

Creative Commons

Search the Creative Commons -- searches across more than 300 million images from open APIs and the Common Crawl dataset. It goes beyond simple search to aggregate results across multiple public repositories into a single catalog and facilitates reuse through features like machine-generated tags and one-click attribution.  More info here

Content that has a Creative Commons license is free to download, adapt, distribute, and transmit without having to ask permission.  Depending on the license, however, there may be certain conditions: you may only be able to use the content for educational purposes, you may have to give attribution, etc. (Licensing characteristics can be found below). Because licenses vary, always be sure to check the exact terms of the license before using an image.

Attribution: others can use the work however they like, so long as they give credit

No Derivative Work: others can copy, display, or perform your work, but it must be verbatim

Non-Commercial: others can use your work, but for non-commercial purposes only

Share Alike: others can distribute derivative works, but only under the same terms as the original license

Library of Congress

Library of Congress Prints & Photographs Online -- Public domain Images from the Library of Congress. (please note that while the catalog is added to on a regular basis, it is not an exhaustive listing of the holdings of the Prints & Photographs Division, which consist of more than 14 million items.)