HABS/HAER/HALS Photography Standards

The Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), Historic American Engineering Record (HAER), Historic American Landscapes Survey (HALS), and similar historical documentation standards all require 4 x 5 inch (or larger) black and white negatives and contact prints for the photographic portion of the project. The standards also call for photographic equipment capable of perspective correction done in the field at the time the exposures are made.

Polyester-based archivally-processed sheet film, and selenium-toned contact prints, are the current standard for historical documentation because they are the only photographic media that meet the 500-year lifetime requirement for the documentation materials.

My equipment, materials, and processing methods all meet or exceed these standards. Indeed, large-format film-based black and white photography is all that I do.

Standards Documents:

Here are links to reference documents for the various standards that I follow:

Additional Useful Links

Here are links to my sources for archival packaging for the photographic documentation materials (see the Photographic Activity Test standard above): Here are links to other professionals in the Heritage Documentation world who are familiar with my work: