FDLPI recently attended the Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) Conference in Arlington, Virginia, October 16 – 18, 2017.  This annual conference brings together federal depository librarians throughout the country, and allows them to meet with and hear from the Depository Library Council (DLC), the Superintendent of Documents, and the staff of the Government Publishing Office (GPO).  These entities supervise and offer guidance to the libraries in the federal depository program.

Brooklyn Law School Library is one of over a thousand federal depository libraries located throughout the United States in academic, government and public libraries.  The mission of the Federal Depository Library Program is to provide free, ready, and permanent public access to federal government information, now and for future generations.  The BLS Library became a federal depository in 1974, and as such we receive government documents in print, digital and microfiche formats.  Among the titles that we receive from the GPO, the distributor for the FDLP, are the United States Code, United States Reports, the Code of Federal Regulations, the Federal Register, and the Congressional Record.

There were over 40 programs held during the three day conference.  Some of the topics covered were: Disaster Preparedness and the Response in the FDLP – Hurricanes Harvey & Irma; to SuDoc or Not: Organizing Your Documents Collection to Meet Your Patrons’ Needs; When Women Didn’t Count: Gaps in Federal Statistics; the U.S. Courts: Our Library Program, PACER, and Opinions n FDsys; and the New U.S. Government Online Bookstore.

Some of the other interesting programs I attended were:

  • Title 44 Reform:  GPO Director Davita Vance-Cooks has charged the DLC with making recommendations for changes to Chapter 19, Title 44, of the U.S. Code, including requiring legislative, executive, and judicial branch agencies to deposit authenticated electronic publications with the GPO; remove the requirement that a depository library hold at least 10,000 books because it is no longer a metric for success or sustainability; permit regional depositories to share their collections and services across state lines, so long as the Senators in all the involved states agree; and authorize the GPO to digitize previously printed historical materials disseminated to the public; etc.
  • Law Librarian of Congress Jane Sanchez gave an overview of the various collections of the Law Library of Congress and stated that they have a mandate to serve all three branches of government; the Law Library of Congress has nearly three million volumes and that half of the collection is foreign and international material. She has started working on a project with the Superintendent of Documents to digitize the U.S. Supreme Court Records & Briefs and the Serial Set (a historical collection of government documents which includes Congressional reports, documents & prints, among other material).
  • Meg Phillips, External Affairs Liaison, at the National Archives and Records Administration, gave an overview of the holdings of the National Archives, including a brief history of presidential libraries and presidential records, and described the congressional records and court records held by NARA.
  • Robert Berry, BLS alumnus of the class of 1999, and now Manager of the Patent & Trademark Resource Center Program in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) spoke, along with Librarian Tiffany Mair, about the work of the 87 libraries in their system.  He also presented historical information and illustrations of the three types of patents available from the USPTO: utility, design, and plant patents.
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Library of Congress Updates Online Catalog

Realizing that many users are now accessing their online catalog via mobile devices, the Library of Congress has released a new catalog interface.  The new interface incorporates responsive Web design, which enables optimal viewing and interaction across a wide range of devices. Responsive design provides easy reading and navigation with a minimum of resizing, panning, and scrolling, regardless of the size of the device, from desktop computer monitors to mobile phones, tablets, etc. LC’s and is ADA-compliant, making the LC Online Catalog accessible to all users including those with disabilities.  In addition, the  Catalog now has its own branding and the Library’s Ask a Librarian service is presented prominently on every page.

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Library of Congress collections contain over 162 million books, periodicals, manuscripts, maps, music, recordings, images, and electronic resources. The LC Online Catalog contains 17 million records describing these collections. You can search Catalog records by keyword or browse by authors/creators, subjects, names/titles, series/uniform titles, and call numbers.

Check it out!

Black History Month – Rosa Parks Papers Go Online

from Library of Congress –

rosaThe Rosa Parks Collection at the Library of Congress has been digitized and is now online.

The papers of Rosa Parks (1913-2005) span the years 1866-2006, with the bulk of the material dating from 1955 to 2000.  The collection contains approximately 7,500 items in the Manuscript Division, as well as 2,500 photographs in the Prints and Photographs Division. The collection documents many aspects of Parks’s private life and public activism on behalf of civil rights for African Americans.

Events surrounding Parks’s arrest in 1955 for disorderly conduct after she refused to give her seat to a white passenger, as well as the subsequent Montgomery Bus Boycott, are described in many of her writings, notes, and correspondence from 1955 to 1956. Other subjects covered in the collection include Parks’s work in Congressman John Conyers‘s Detroit office; her participation in major civil rights events such as the Prayer Pilgrimage for Freedom in 1957, March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in 1963, Mississippi Freedom Project in 1964, and the Poor People’s Campaign in 1968; and Parks’s Presidential Medal of Freedom and Congressional Gold Medal along with material concerning other honors received by Parks.

The Rosa Parks Collection joins additional important civil rights materials at the Library of Congress, including the papers of Thurgood Marshall, A. Philip Randolph, Bayard Rustin, Roy Wilkins and the records of both the NAACP and the National Urban League. The collection becomes part of the larger story of our nation.