The Collections Online Database provides access to items in the Museum Department and Special Collections Department of the H. Furlong Baldwin Library that have been previously digitized. With well over one million individual items in the combined collections, not all items from the Museum and Library are currently available digitally. The database will be added to on a continual basis as more items from the collections are digitized.

Frequently Asked Questions and Answers:

1. How do I begin using the Collections Online Database?

You may begin by entering a search term into the Search box on the home page of the Collections Online Database. You may browse by subject or by medium.

For example, if a user were to search for a very popular painting by Charles Willson Peale titled “Exhumation of the Mastodon”, enter the title of the painting, simply “painting”, or the artist’s name could be used to begin your search. Users may also search by topic, such as African American history, American Civil War, etc.

2. I would like to purchase a digital reproduction of an item I found on the Collections Online Database. How do I do this?

Once you have written down the information in the record (item ID, title, creator, description, date, collection, etc.), please review the fee schedules on the Rights and Reproductions section of our web page. Fees depend on your intended usage and how large of a digital file you would like to request.

3. I have confirmed that MdHS owns a particular item that I would like to preview but I cannot find it in this database. Why am I not able to find it?

There are two reasons why you may not be able to find an item you are sure we have in the collection. The item may not be digitized or it may be digitized but has not yet been uploaded to this database. If the item has not been digitized, we could provide this service for you. Please see our Rights and Reproductions page for fee information for this service.

4. May I put a Maryland Historical Society-owned image on to my personal blog or social networking page?

Yes, so long as you:

  • Identify the author/artist of the image and the item ID (if included in the record) and credit the Maryland Historical Society using the authorized credit line: Courtesy of the Maryland Historical Society.
  • Do not remove the Maryland Historical Society seal.
  • Do not use the image to promote, advertise, or sell your own products or services or for any other commercial and unauthorized purposes.
  • Do not publish the image in a book, magazine, newspaper, journal, etc.

Please see the Terms of Use section of our website for more information. Contact the Department of Imaging Services at [email protected] if you are unsure of whether or not your intended use violates MdHS’s terms of use.

Key to Abbreviations: 

SVF -   Subject Vertical File 
PVF -   Portrait Vertical File
GPVF - Group Portrait Vertical File
CSPh - Cased Photograph Collection
BCLM - Baltimore City Life Museum [Collection] 
PP -     Prints and Photographs [Collection]
H -      Hambleton Print [Collection]