Canadian Pacific Historical Association

Documents Library - Information

The following is information about the project and various aspects of it's services.

About the scanning process

All documents scanned full size at 400dpi using Contex Magnum series sheet feed scanners. Our blueprint scanners have the capacity to handle any document up to 54" wide and unlimited length.

Scanning drawings full sized allows individuals, with a plotter, to print out a reproduction of the original document. Even if you don't have a plotter you are still able to print out a high quality reduced sized document on a 600dpi laser printer. The resolution of the scan is high enough for excellent clarity and reproduction in magazines and books.

Books and printed matter are scanned full sized at 400dpi using a desktop flatbed scanner. The choice of this resolution is to balance the requirements of reproduction quality and saving disk space and download speed.

All scanned documents are saved to lossless compressed TIF file format.

Portable Document Format

Adobe Acrobat's Portable Document Format (PDF) was chosen to share documents because it is universally supported by all mainstream personal computer operating systems. The PDF document format is optimized for sharing on the web by allowing paged documents transferred to the viewer's browser page by page instead of downloading the entire document. In addition we are able to achieve an excellent compression ration of about 10,000:1 for drawings. That is, a 13 megabyte TIF file can be compressed to ~130k PDF file when we are done.

Adobe Acrobat, while a very useful file format, has one limitation that we know of. The maximum document width is limited to 65.5". After we have processed our final drawing file we create a special proportionally resized version that is 65.5" wide. If at some time Acrobat can support wider documents we will refresh the website with the larger document.

If you do not have Adobe's free Acrobat Reader installed you can download the latest version from get.adobe.com/reader/

Usage Restrictions

All materials presented at this site are contributed for your use gratis. The following are the restrictions placed on usage.

Personal Use

You may copy and print the documents for your personal usage without restriction. You may not sell document files or hard copy reproductions for any reason.

Commercial Use

Commercial enterprises are allowed free unfettered access to the archive for research purposes. If an author or commercial enterprise wish to reproduce any work for inclusion into a commercial product we stongly suggest you to contact the organization that originally produced the document to seek clearance for reproduction.

The CPHA would also appreciate credit whn you use this material. Please contact us for correct wording for CPHA credits.

It is not the intention of the CPHA to police compliance with these conditions. Our only interest is that proper credit is given to the appropriate organizations and CPHA volunteers for their hard work.


The Canadian Pacific Historical Association (CPHA) is a non-profit organization and is in no way affiliated with, or endorsed by, the Canadian Pacific Railway Company. To contact the webmaster click here.