19 May 1998
From: Director, Naval Historical Center
Subj: POLICY STATEMENT ON THE PUBLIC DOMAIN RELEASE AND POTENTIAL COMMERCIAL PUBLICATION OF SELECT NAVAL HISTORICAL CENTER STUDIES
Ref: (a) NO9BL memo of 12 May 98
1. The Naval Historical Center is mandated to gain for its historical studies the widest possible audience among naval officers and the interested general public. This is in accordance with its mission to interpret and preserve this nation's naval heritage for the Navy and the general public. To accomplish this end and to conserve personnel time and financial resources this activity intends to alter, as described below, our customary procedure governing the publication and release of select scholarly historical works produced at this Center.
2. When one of these select monographs or reference works is completed by a member of the Center staff and the editorial and peer review process has been completed to the satisfaction of the Director, Naval Historical Center, the branch producing the work will arrange for its release in manuscript to at least three official Navy libraries. The release time and date as well as the location of the libraries in question will appear on the Naval Historical Center web page. Once this is accomplished, the manuscript is legally considered public domain [reference (a)]. Any interested readers wanting to copy all or part of the manuscript will have to contact this Center. As we cannot burden other naval libraries with this task, we shall provide complete or partial copies to interested readers at cost.
3. If one or more commercial presses voice interest in cooperating with the Naval Historical Center to prepare for publication a study released to the public in this way, the branch producing the study or reference work will provide limited consultation to all interested publishers on a first-come first- serve basis.
4. The Director, Naval Historical Center, expects any press publishing a Naval Historical Center product to conduct itself in a professional and ethical fashion by producing a volume which meets customary standards in materials, composition, and appearance. He also expects the name of the original author or editor and his/her affiliation with the U.S. Naval Historical Center to appear on the title page and book jacket in a position traditional for historical publications. This Center insists on identifying itself as the source of any scholarly work produced by its staff. Finally, the Naval Historical Center can accept no royalties on its books published in this manner.
5. In releasing its work to the public in this way, the Naval Historical Center desires first and foremost to bring to the attention of the Navy and a much wider audience of interested readers the high quality work of its historians and the interesting and significant history of the United States Navy.
WILLIAM S. DUDLEY
9 April 2001