Skip Navigation Links  The Library of Congress >> Researchers
Moving Image Research Center (Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division)

Notice: As the Library of Congress gradually begins to reopen its Reading Rooms for research, we are putting safety first with new procedures and practices that protect everyone’s health. Confirmed appointments are required for entry into Library facilities, and everyone must follow the health and safety protocols established by the Library, in consultation with public health professionals. Most of these protocols are mandatory, regardless of vaccination status. Starting on June 14, 2021, the Moving Image Research Center will provide access by appointment only between the hours of 9:30 am – 12:30 pm and 1:00 pm - 4:00 pm, Monday - Friday. Please submit an Ask a Librarian, or call (202) 707-8572 to schedule an appointment. For more information, see:

About the Collections

Research, Reference & Policies

Digital Collections & Online Resources

Image: see caption below

Screen shot from "Women in the News" (All American News, Inc., 1950). Available for online viewing in the
National Screening Room

New! What's New: The National Screening Room

Now See Hear! National Audio-Visual Conservation Center Blog
Now See Hear! The National Audio-Visual Conservation Center Blog

National Film Registry
The National Film Registry

New! What's New: American Archive of Public Broadcasting External Link

101 Independence Ave. SE
James Madison Building, LM 336
Washington, D.C. 20540-4690
Map showing location
Reference assistance

Weekdays, 8:30am to 5:00pm
Closed Weekends &
Federal Holidays

Ask a Librarian
Ask a LibrarianWant to ask the reference staff a question about motion picture and television collections?



Viewers are advised to contact the Moving Image Research Center two weeks prior to visiting the Library.

  • The majority of our moving images are stored offsite and researchers must schedule a viewing appointment at least two weeks in advance

The Library of Congress began collecting motion pictures in 1893 when Thomas Edison and his brilliant assistant W.K.L. Dickson deposited the Edison Kinetoscopic Records for copyright. However, because of the difficulty of safely storing the flammable nitrate film used at the time, the Library retained only the descriptive material relating to motion pictures. In 1942, recognizing the importance of motion pictures and the need to preserve them as a historical record, the Library began the collection of the films themselves; from 1949 on these included films made for television. Today the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division (MBRS) is responsibile for the acquisition, cataloging and preservation of the Library's motion picture and television collections. The Moving Image Research Center to provides access and information services to an international community of film and television professionals, archivists, scholars and researchers. Our holdings complement the audio recordings served in the Recorded Sound Research Center.

  The Library of Congress >> Researchers
  June 4, 2021
Legal | External Link Disclaimer

Contact Us:  
Ask a Librarian