The J. Paul Getty Museum is home to troves of fascinating historical artifacts. And last week, the museum announced a project to give the public unfettered access to it. The Open Content Program makes 4,600 high-resolution images available for free and for any use whatsoever. Here are 11 gems to help begin your historical journey.


Carleton Watkins, Cathedral Rock - Yosemite, 1861, Albumen silver print.

Carleton Watkins took a whole mess of beautiful pictures of Yosemite and the American West before Ansel Adams was even born!


William Henry Jackson, Dale Creek Bridge, Union Pacific Railway, 1885, Albumen silver print.

This... reminds me of an old-timey hyperloop.


Roger Fenton, Dinornis Elephantopus, 1854 - 1858, Salted paper print.


Louis-Émile Durandelle, Exposition universelle de 1889 / État d'avancement, 1888, Albumen silver print.


Anna Atkins and Anne Dixon, Leucojam Varium, 1854, Cyanotype.

A great example of a photogram (placing an object directly on photo-sensitive paper), by one of the first female photographers, Anna Atkins.


Unknown (photographer) , Moon Crater, late 1850s, Salted paper print from a Collodion negative.


A.J. Russell, Commodore Dead, American, April 1864, Albumen silver print.


Eadweard J. Muybridge, Running (Galloping), 1878 - 1879.

Muybridge is often credited with ushering in the age of the motion picture. His high-speed sequential photographs predated the first movie cameras and projectors later in the 19th century.


Unknown (illuminator) , Two Diagrams Showing the Orbits of the Sun and the Moon, Franco-Flemish, fourth quarter of 13th century (after 1277).

It's amazing to see those old geocentric theories actually put down on paper in a visual way!


Doris Ulmann, Darkroom Still Life, 1918, Platinum print.


Walker Evans, Couple at Coney Island, 1928.


Check out the complete database of the Getty Open Content Program with over 4,600 photographs, paintings, drawings, other images to download for free. Drop your finds in the comments, below! [Getty Open Content]