FamilySearch recently announced that it has discontinued its Family History Library online photo duplication service. Users could previously request no charge copies of individual images from microfilm or fiche, copies of records, or pages in books. This was a great service and I am sad to see it go. FamilySearch cites the availability of online digitized films and books as the reason.
I think publication only increases the need. I’ve come across poorly digitized images on FamilySearch.org and I’ve had the luxury of running across the street to the Family History Library and copying single pages from microfilm. Most people can’t do that. They’ll have to pay for an entire roll of microfilm to be delivered to their local family history center when all they need is a couple of images. Some flawed logic also suggests another reason. As FamilySearch publishes more and more of its books and microfilm, more and more of what’s left can not be published for legal reasons. That increases the need for the photo duplication service. (The flaw in that logic is that the absolute number of unpublishable books and films doesn’t increase.)
FamilySearch suggests that in place of using this service for microfilm that is not available online, order the microfilm in your local family history center. I endorse this as being a more sound research methodology. As I’ve highlighted recently, you need to view a record in context to see surrounding content.
For books, FamilySearch advises using the OCLC WorldCat link in the FamilySearch catalog to see what nearby library has the book you need. Some may be available via interlibrary loan. I think the NGS book collection is available via the St. Louis County Library. Otherwise, a library may be willing to copy a few pages for you. For hard to find family history books, I advise you check libraries with large genealogy collections. I know the Allen County Public Library has a photo duplication service and for a reasonable fee will copy a few pages for you. I don’t know about the DAR library in Washington, D.C. or the NEHGS library in Boston. The Library of Congress is also one to check.