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Simpson | Stafford | Special Collections

Online Videos: Open Access Videos

Internet Sources

A number of openly accessible Internet sites provide access to streaming videos. These sites may host content or merely point to content hosted elsewhere. Advertising supports some of these sites. Others are the official site for a producer, distributor, series, or festival. Searching functions on these sites vary widely, and content can change or be removed without notice. For additional information or to connect to any of these sites, click on the site name, below.


NOTE:  UMW Libraries is not responsible for any of the content linked from these sites.  We cannot guarantee availability of the content they provide nor assume responsibility for the functionality of these sites.

American Experience

Connect to American Experience

View complete episodes of select films from the PBS documentary series.

American Indian Film Gallery

Connect to American Indian Film Gallery

Vintage motion pictures offering rich perspectives on the American Indian experience.

The site organizes titles by tribes, linking to films for more than 100 tribes.  A text box to describe each film is nonfunctioning, providing only "lorum ipsum dolor" filler text as a place holder.  Apart from what displays in the film itself, no additional information (publication date, running time, etc.) is provided.

These archival films are not perfect. Some were educational shorts used in American schools from the 1930s to the 1970s. Several have abbreviated titles or missing endings. Some are spliced or scratched; others have faded color. 

American Memory

Connect to American Memory

The American Memory project from the Library of Congress provides access to several hundred early motion pictures, organized into 11 discrete collections:

  • America at Work, America at Leisure: Motion Pictures from 1894-1915
  • American Variety Stage: Vaudeville and Popular Entertainment, 1870-1920
  • Before and After the Great Earthquake and Fire: Early Films of San Francisco, 1897-1916
  • Buckaroos in Paradise: Ranching Culture in Northern Nevada, 1945-1982 
  • Inside an American Factory: Films of the Westinghouse Works, 1904
  • Last Days of a President: Films of McKinley and the Pan-American Exposition, 1901
  • Life of a City: Early Films of New York, 1898-1906
  • Origins of American Animation
  • Prosperity and Thrift: the Coolidge Era and the Consumer Economy, 1921-1929
  • Spanish-American War in Motion Pictures
  • Theodore Roosevelt: His Life and Times on Film

American Rhetoric

Connect to American Rhetoric

Features a growing collection of text, audio, and video versions of over 5,000 speeches. The site provides access to "public speeches, sermons, legal proceedings, lectures, debates, interviews, and other recorded media events." Includes sections for Christian rhetoric, "Top 100 Speeches," "Rhetorical Figures in Sound," "Rhetoric of 9-11," and more. Notable is the selection of speeches from movies, arranged alphabetically by title.

Not all speeches have accompanying videos. 

Annenberg Media

Connect to Annenberg Media

Part of the Annenberg Foundation, Annenberg Media uses media and telecommunications to advance excellent teaching in American schools. The web site provides access to many of the exceptional educational video programs developed with grant money as telecourses, including series on algebra, art, chemistry, economics, film, history, poetry, and foreign languages, among others.

Not all series listed on the site are available for streaming.  This graphic marks programs available for online viewing .  Videos stream in Flash.  Many of the videos include closed captioning. 

Archive of American Television

Connect to The Archive of American Television

Hosted by the TV Academy Foundation this archive provides access to hundreds of in-depth video interviews with TV's greatest legends and pioneers.

These television history interviews can be  browsed by person, show, topic or profession. New interviews and indexes are added regularly.

C-SPAN Video Library

Connect to C-SPAN Video Library

Contains all C-SPAN programs since 1987, indexed, abstracted, and cataloged by the C-SPAN Archives staff.

Programs are indexed by subject, speaker names, titles, affiliations, sponsors, committees, categories, formats, policy groups, keywords, and location. The congressional sessions and committee hearings are indexed by person with full-text.

Civil Rights Digital Library

Connect to Civil Rights Digital Library

Provides access to online films, texts, images, and audio recordings related to the Civil Rights movement in the United States in the 1950's and 1960's.

The site provides both simple keyword searching and advanced searching.  Content also can be browsed by Events, Places, People, Topics, Media Types (including print, government records, correspondences, etc.)

Other features of the site include numerous instructional materials, including lesson plans, quizzes, slide shows, study guides, and worksheets.

EVIA Digital Archive Project - Ethnographic Video for Instruction & Analysis

Connect to EVIA

Collaborative endeavor to create a digital archive of ethnographic field video for use by scholars and instructors.

Beyond the primary mission of digitally preserving ethnographic field video, the EVIA Project has also invested significantly in the creation of software and systems for the annotation, discovery, playback, peer review, and scholarly publication of video and accompanying descriptions.

NOTE: Viewing videos requires registering for an account and agreeing to the end-user license agreement.


Connect to FedFlix

FedFlix is a joint venture between the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) and  Fedflix provides access to some of the best videos of the United States Government covering a variety of topics from different govenrment agencies and departments.


Connect to Folkstreams

Provides streaming access to a large collection of documentary films about American folk, or roots, cultures.  Includes essays about the traditions and filmmakes, transcriptions, study and teaching guides, suggested readings, and links to related websites. 

Site provides simple keyword and advanced searching, as well as ability to brose by subjects, regions, titles, filmmakers, and other categories.  Video displays include links to additional, related films.


Connect to Frontline

View complete episodes of a large selection of films from the acclaimed PBS series.

HealthLibrary Online

Connect to HealthLibrary Online

The Stanford Health Library provides a collection of online videos covering various health topics, including health and society, cancer support, and women's health.

NOTE: Not all videos are available for online viewing.


Connect to HippoCampus

A project of the Monterey Institute for Technology and Education (MITE), HippoCampus provides high-quality, multimedia content on general education subjects to high school and college students.

Content is organized by broad disciplines:  Algebra, American Government, Biology, Calculus, Environmental Science, Physics, Psychology, Religion, Statistics, US History

The site was designed as part of Open Education Resources (OER), a worldwide effort to improve access to quality education. Colleges and universities develop the content and contributes it to the National Repository of Online Courses (NROC), another MITE project.


Connect to Hulu

A partnership between NBC and ABC (Disney), Hulu is predominantly a site for television content. 

Hulu distributes video both on its own website and syndicates its hosting to other sites, and allows users to embed Hulu clips on their websites. In addition to NBC, ABC and FOX programs and movies, Hulu carries shows from other networks such as Comedy Central, PBS, USA Network, Bravo, FX, Syfy, Sundance, E!, and other commercial producers. 

Internet Archive

Connect to The Internet Archive

The Moving Image Archive within the Internet Archive provides access to nearly a quarter million films, uploaded by Archive users, and ranging from classic full-length films, to daily alternative news broadcasts, to cartoons and concerts.

Videos in the Archive are organized into 15 broad sub-categories:  Animation and Cartoons, Arts & Music, Computers & Technology, Cultural & Academic Films, Ephemeral Films, Home Movies, Movies, News & Public Affairs, Open Source Movies, Spirituality & Religion, Sports Videos, Video Games, Vlogs, and Youth Media.

The Archive also contains the Prelinger Archive, the most complete and varied collection of ephemeral films (advertising, educational, industrial, and amateur) in existence.

Learners TV

Connect to Learners TV

This is a comprehensive site providing thousands of streaming and downloadable video lectures, live nnline Tests, and other materials in the fields of Biology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Dentistry, Engineering, History, Language Training, Law, Literature, Management and Accounting, Mathematics, Medicine, Nursing, Physics, and Psychology

The site provides free video and audio lectures of whole courses conducted by university faculty from around the world. Most of the materials offered are licensed by the respective institutes under a Creative Commons License.


Connect to MathTV

MathTV is a collection of short, concise videos that provide assistance in solving mathematics problems. 

Media That Matters Film Festival

Connect to Media That Matters Film Festival

Annual collection showcasing twelve short films on important topics of the day.  Seven years of films available on the site, organized alphabetically by title, by year.  A simple search interface facilitates finding films by keyword.

Films may also be browsed by one of 15 issues:  Criminal Justice, Economic Justice, Environment, Family & Society, Gay/Lesbian, Gender/Women, Health/Health Advocacy, Human Rights, Immigration, International, Media, Politics/Government, Racial Justice, Religous Freedom, and Youth.


Connect to Movieclips

Provides more than 12,000 short clips from feature films licensed from Fox, MGM, Paramount, Sony, Universal and Warner Bros. The Movieclips player can be embedded in social networks as Facebook and MySpace, and shared on blogs, Twitter and other personal websites, and used in PowerPoint presentations.

In addition to searching by title or actor, the site provide additional search capabilities for dialogue, genre, action, occassion, theme, and mood and categories including best kiss, tearjerkers, birthdays, holidays, awkward moments, action moments, bad guys and fight scenes.

NOTE: Reuse of the clips requires registering with the site.


Connect to NeoK12

A collection of educational videos, quizzes, and games for kids in kindergarten, elementary, middle and high school.


Connect to Newslook


Provides direct access to visual news stories and analysis of the current issues, selected from the web by journalists and documentarians.

Advanced search provides filters for subject, source, length, and ideology (Progressive, Centrist, Conservative).

Sources include (among many others): ABC, CBS, Fox News, NBC, PBS, Associated Press, Al Jezeera, C-Span, Time, Washington Post.  Categories include World (further subdivided by region), Economics, Science, Health, Art & Culture.

Specific stories provide links to Different Perspectives, Background and Analysis & Additional Stories as they relate to that story. Registered users can comment on individual stories.


Connect to NOVA

Provides access to selected programs from the acclaimed PBS science series.  Programs are divided into chapters and have closed captioning.

Available videos are organized by broad subject categories:  Anthropology, Disasters, Earth, Exploration, Flight, Health, History, Investigations, Nature, Physics & Math, Space, and Technology.

PBS Learning Media

Connect to PBS Learning Media

Developed by PBS, WNET, and KET, and 31 other PBS stations.  Content contributed from publicly funded organizations, including the National Archives, the Library of Congress and NPR, NASA, the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health and the US Department of Education, delivers thousands of resources for use in the classroom and with home-schoolers.

Content aligns with Common Core State Standards for preK-16 classrooms.  This collection contains more that than 114,000 research-based instructional resources – including videos, interactives, images, audio files, mobile apps, lesson plans, and worksheets. 

NOTE: Requires personal registration on the site.

PBS Video

Connect to PBS Video

Provides access to selected programs from selected PBS series (such as Nature, American Experience, Nova, and Frontline, among others.)  Users can browse by Programs, Topics, or Collections. Individual programs are subdivided into smaller segments.

P.O.V. Video

Connect to P.O.V. Video

Provides a selection of full length films, short films, and lesson plan based clips from the acclaimed PBS documentary film series POV.


Connect to SchoolTube is a website dedicated to student video and media sharing for entertainment and classroom use. Students and teachers can share video and media in a fun and safe environment.


Connect to ScienceCinema

Contains multimedia videos highlighting the U.S. Department of Energy's scientific research.  State-of-the-art audio indexing and speech recognition technology allows the user to search for specific words and phrases spoken by the presenter in these video files. Simply enter a term and the results list will point to the precise snippets of the video where the term was spoken.

Scripps Library and Multimedia Archive

Connect to Scripps Library and Multimedia Archive

From the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia, the Scripps archive provides a unique collection of material on U.S. public policy.

The Library's collection includes streaming video of State of the Union addresses from Kennedy to Obama.  The multimedia archive also includes more than 2,500 hours of secret White House recordings, hundreds of presidential oral history interviews, audio and video recordings of Miller Center Forums, and documents related to the executive branch of American government.


Connect to SnagFilms

Provides access to full-length documentary films from established distributors and first-time filmmakers.  The Snag Films library includes more than 850 films.

Filmmakers and distributors submit titles to SnagFilms for curatorial review.  Videos stream in Flash.

The site organizes titles by broad Topics (such as Arts, Environment, Health, History, Women's Issues, etc.) and by Channels (including well-established film companies such as Alive Mind, Icarus, Fanlight, PBS, and National Geographic).

The SnagFilms website encourages donating to causes by linking each film to a specific charity.

Brief commercials precede and are interspersed through the video playback.

TED: Technology, Entertainment, Design

Connect to TED:  Technology, Entertainment, Design

Makes available the best talks and performances from TED and partners.  More than 500 TEDTalks are now available, with more added each week. All of the talks feature closed captions in English, and many feature subtitles in various languages. Videos are released under a Creative Commons license, so they can be freely shared and reposted.

Talks are organized under broad subject categories:  Technology, Entertainment, Design, Business, Science, and Global Issues.


Connect to TeacherTube

TeacherTube is an online community for educators to share instructional videos.  Teachers can post videos designed for students to learn concepts or skills, and TeacherTube is also designed as a site that provides anytime, anywhere professional development with teachers instructing fellow teachers.

UC Berkeley Media Resources Center Online Media

Connect to UC Berkeley Media Resources Center Online Media

A collection online video and audio recordings of notable lectures, events, and readings held at University of California, Berkeley.  This database includes both video materials accessible by the general public, and videos licensed for access by current University of California, Berkeley students, faculty, and staff only (CalNet authentication required). Audio recordings in the collection are accessible by all users.

Access to the videos in the collection requires Windows Media player. Macintosh users will need the free Flip4Mac plug-in.  Access to the audio recordings in the collection requires the Real player.

Linked from within this site are audio, video, and text files from the UC Berkeley Library Social Activism Sound Recording Project.  This collection includes information on the Free Speech Movement, the Black Panther Party, Anti-Vietnam War Protests in the San Francisco Area and Beyond, and LGBT History.

Vega Science Programmes

Connect to Vega Science Programmes

Provided by the Vega Science Trust, this English site provides links to a variety of videos on scientific topics.

WGBH Open Vault

Connect to WGBH Open Vault

Provides online access to unique and historically important content produced by the public television and radio station WGBH. The ever-expanding site contains video, audio, images, searchable transcripts, and resource management tools, all of which are available for individual and classroom learning.

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