Uncover Local History in Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive

Written by Clarity Amrein, Community Content Coordinator, Genealogy and Local History, Downtown Main Library

Over 1 million images from the Cincinnati Enquirer, opens a new window have been donated to be permanently preserved in CHPL's Digital Library to form the Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive. 

The Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library will gradually scan the entire archive into CHPL's Digital Library, but with over a million images (enough to fill over 1,200 banker's boxes), you're invited to prioritize the digitization based on what you request!

A Treasure Trove of Local History 

This collection of photos was published between 1945 and 1995 and have been donated by the Cincinnati Enquirer to be permanently preserved.  

How to Use the Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive

Visit CHPL.org/enquirer-archive to see everything digitized so far and to request new images to be digitized next.

Requesting an image from the Archive is easy:

  1. If you’re interested in searching the collection yourself, use the inventory spreadsheet to search the folder names of images and press CTRL + F to search the tab of the subject you’re looking for. They're sorted by People, Places, Things, Ohio, or Cincinnati. Once you find them, mark down their box and folder number.          
    • If you don’t see exactly what you’re looking for – that’s ok! Record the name, description, or other information about what you are looking for. 
    • There are over 36,000 folders, so if you’re overwhelmed, you can simply fill out a request form and a librarian will search for you.
  2. Submit a Request Form and fill out the form with your contact information and request. From there, Library staff will reach out to you for more information as they digitize images for you.

There are a few things to remember as we preserve this massive local history collection:

  • Up to 20 digital images may be delivered via email per request. While the archive has millions of images, we can't guarantee there will be photos of precisely what you're searching for.
  • Some photos are still protected by copyright, so not all photos can be digitized even if they are available.
  • To ensure everyone has a chance to use the archive, only one request can be made by a single individual every six weeks.
  • Requests will take a minimum of 4-6 six weeks to complete.

The Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive is free for anyone to browse and enjoy. However, the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library cannot grant reproduction for images in the Archive.

To obtain reproduction rights to publish images in the Archive, please contact the Cincinnati Enquirer at at lgillespie@enquirer.com.

The Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive is one of the most significant donations of local history to the Cincinnati & Hamilton County Public Library. Thank you to the Cincinnati Enquirer for ensuring these one-of-a-kind pieces of history are publicly accessible for generations to come.

What are you hoping to find in the Cincinnati Enquirer Photo Archive? Let us know in the comments below!