Anyone who has set out to do a project that needs historical footage/imagery, knows just how long and tedious the process can be to find what you need. You can spend days looking, and you have to make sure it's all legal to use. Now pond5 has gone and done a ton of that legwork for us with their free: public domain section
It's all there in black and white (pun!), over 75,000 videos, audio, images, & models. Completely free and clear to use and searchable. It isn't perfect, for instance searching "nyc" brought up literally 1 video clip, but search "new york" and you'll get over 450 results. I'm sure over time pond5 will adjust the tags to help with searching, but for the time being, just trying a few search terms is cake compared to trying to scan all of google for usable public domain results.
While much of this collection is older footage, search for "shuttle launch" and you'll get a look at tons of amazing clips such as the one this is grabbed from:
Of course you still need to hunt for what you need, and one hitch i noticed with those shuttle launch clips are that they are very short, like 10 seconds short. Only half of the over 200 shuttle launch clips are longer than 12 seconds. Thankfully, there's a filter to search for clips by minimum/maximum duration.
This certainly isn't a completely new idea, there are plenty of sites that offer public domain clips, but this may be the largest scale one to date. The next time i need archival footage, guess where i'm going to start looking first?