October 25, 2016 at 11:46PM


How Do I Acquire Stock War Footage And Rights?

I'm going to make a music video for a band I know. We've been discussing the use of stock war footage to edit with the video. Thing is, I know I could just look up stuff on Youtube, but i want quality and I want the rights to use it. I guess this would probably fall under a commercial license, since a videoclip is used to sell music.

So do any of you guys know a great place to get this kind of footage? I'm willing to spend a bit of cash, but I'm a student so anything above $50 would take food out of my mouth. Free would be better, because then I can spend a bit more money on costumes for the shoot.


The National Archives has what you want, although not necessarily in a format in which you'd want it: http://www.documentary.org/feature/taking-stock-national-archives-findin...

Specifically: The Military Category

The motion pictures produced for the US military services represent the largest (in reels) film collection in NARA and consists of 40 RGs. During the First World War, the US Army Signal Corps was given the responsibility of documenting American involvement, and its collection (RG 111) contains over 450 titles consisting of almost a half-million feet of film shot during the 1917 to 1919 period. Films such as Bayonet Instruction (1918) and Aviation Activities in the AEF (1919) are excellent examples. This particular RG contains over 12,000 more titles that cover Army maneuvers and battles up to the 1980s. The US Air Force Miscellaneous Series (RG 342) covers aviation and Air Force activities from 1909 through the early 1960s, with titles like Dedication of Wright Field (1927), USAF Goodwill Tour (1954) and TAC Operations, Homestead AFB (1962).

Activities of the US Navy (RG 428) encompasses about 13,300 reels from before World War I to the early 1980s with titles like USS Holland Submarine Trials (1904), Invasion of Guam: Activity Aboard USS New Mexico (1944) and Poseidon Launch (1971). Motion pictures made by the US Marine Corps (RG 127) date from 1917 to the late 1970s and feature approximately 2,900 reels that include titles such as Soldiers of the Sea (1939) and Hawk Missile Firing, 29 Palms, CA (1962). All theaters of military operations during World War II, Korea and Vietnam are well documented within these and the other 36 RGs of this category.

October 26, 2016 at 1:22AM


Wow, that's super cool. I should research if we have something like that in the Netherlands, cause that's exactly what I'm looking for. Thank you for your answer!

Auke-Jan Weening

October 26, 2016 at 7:27AM, Edited October 26, 7:27AM

Please don't forget to up-vote helpful answers ;-)

October 26, 2016 at 12:05PM


Got you covered :-)


October 28, 2016 at 3:01PM

You can also take a look at the Prelinger Archive at Archive.org. Much of it is public domain free to use for whatever you like.

October 27, 2016 at 7:34PM


Thank you. That's a great find.

Auke-Jan Weening

October 30, 2016 at 3:38PM

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