Proclamation, June 26, 1924

Purpose: Copyright for South Africans

Date: June 26, 1924

(Original document available here)


Whereas it is provided by the Act of Congress, approved March 4, 1909, entitled “An Act to Amend and Consolidate the Acts Respecting Copyright,” that the copyright secured by the Act except the benefits under Section 1 (e) thereof, as to which special conditions are imposed, shall extend to the work of an author or proprietor who is a citizen or subject of a foreign state or nation, only upon certain conditions set forth in Section 8 of said Act, to wit:

(a) When an alien author or proprietor shall be domiciled within the United States at the time of the first publication of his work; or

(b)When the foreign state or nation of which such author or proprietor is a citizen or subject grants, either by treaty, convention, agreement, or law, to citizens of the United States the benefit of copyright on substantially the same basis as to its own citizens, or copyright protection substantially equal to the protection secured to such foreign author under this Act or by treaty; or when such foreign state or nation is a party to an international agreement which provides for reciprocity in the granting of copyright, by the terms of which agreement the United States, may, at its pleasure, become a party thereto;

AND WHEREAS it is provided by Section 1 (e) of the said Act of Congress, approved March 4, 1909, that the provisions of the Act, “so far as they secure copyright controlling the parts of instruments serving to reproduce mechanically the musical work, shall include only compositions published and copyrighted after this Act goes into effect, and shall not include the works of a foreign author or composer unless the foreign state or nation of which such author or composer is a citizen or subject grants, either by treaty, convention, agreement or law, to citizens of the United States similar rights”;

AND WHEREAS the President is authorized by Section 8 of the said Act to determine and declare by proclamation made from time to time the existence of the reciprocal conditions aforesaid, as the purposes of the Act may require;

AND WHEREAS satisfactory official assurances have been received that the Governor General in Council of the Union of South Africa has issued a Proclamation which will come into operation on July 1, 1924, by which rights to protection for their works in the Union of South Africa are granted to citizens of the United States on substantially the same basis as to subjects of the Union of South Africa, including rights similar to those provided by Section 1 (e) of the Copyright Act of the United States, approved March 4, 1909.

NOW THEREFORE, I, CALVIN COOLIDGE, President of the United States of America, do hereby declare and proclaim

That on and after July 1, 1924, one of the alternative conditions productions specified in Section 8, and the conditions specified in Section 1 (e) of the Act of March 4, 1909, will exist and will be fulfilled in respect to the subjects of the Union of South Africa, and that from that date subjects of the Union of South Africa will be entitled for all their works produced or published on or after said date, to all the benefits of the said Copyright Act of the United States, approved March 4, 1909, including the benefits of Section 1 (e), and of the Acts amendatory of the said Act.

Provided that the enjoyment by any work to which the provisions of this proclamation relate of the rights and benefits conferred by the Copyright Act approved March 4, 1909, and the Acts amendatory thereof, shall be conditional upon compliance with the requirements and formalities prescribed with respect to such works by the copyright laws of the United States, and shall commence from and after compliance with those requirements, constituting due registration for copyright in the United States.

IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the Seal of the United States to be affixed.

DONE at the City of Washington this twenty-sixth day of June in the year of our Lord one thousand nine hundred and twenty-four and of the Independence of the United States of America the one hundred and forty-eighth.


Citation: The Statutes at Large of the United States of America from December, 1923 to March, 1925

The Coolidge Foundation gratefully acknowledges the volunteer efforts of Ava Lavigne who prepared this document for digital publication.

Leave a Reply

XHTML: You can use these tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>