Although under this scheme the Congressional series precedes the departmental
publications, it seems desirable in this introduction to treat of the departmental
publications first, because they form an overwhelmingly large proportion of the
contents of the book.
The classification of departmental publications is naturally the first matter to be
taken into consideration. When the Office of the Superintendent of Documents
was organized, no scheme in existence was found adequate for the classification
of a large library composed exclusively of United States Government publications.
A special scheme suited to our needs was later evolved, as explained in the preface
to "Department list 1, List of publications of Agriculture Department, 1862-1902,"
which was issued by the Superintendent of Documents in 1904. This classification,
used with such success for the publications of the Department of Agriculture, has
been applied to the publications of all Executive Departments and independent
publishing offices, as shown in the present Checklist. The following explanation
of the classification will, it is hoped, make the principles so clear that any library
which desires to adopt this special scheme may experience no difficulties in its
The classification of departmental publications is by Government authors: first, by
Departments or independent publishing offices; second, by bureaus, offices, or divisions
of such Departments or independent publishing offices; third, by series; fourth,
by book numbers.
Department symbol, first term in classification number
The first letter of the distinctive word in the name of each of the nine Executive
Departments is used to designate the Department.
A = Agriculture Department.
C =Commerce and Labor Department.
I = Interior Department.
J = Justice Department.
N = Navy Department. v
P =Post-Office Department. t l Hi Ce ~ / (. e.
S =State Department.
T =-Treasury Department.
W= War Department. v
Two letters are used for independent publishing offices.
AR = American Republics Bureau. [Since Aug. 1910, called Pan American
CS = Civil Service Commission.
DC = District of Columbia.
FC = Fish Commission. [Now under the Commerce and Labor Department.]
FS = Freedman's Savings and Trust Company.
GB = Geographic Board.
GP =Government Printing Office.
GS = General Supply Committee. [Now under Secretary of Treasury.]
IC Interstate Commerce Commission.
Ju -- Judiciary (United States courts, etc.).
La Labor Department. j[Now under the Commerce and Labor Department.]
LC Library of Congress.
NA= National Academy of Sciences.
NIH= National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers.
Pr '= President of United States.
PS = Postal Savings System. [Established June 25, 1910.]
SI = Smithsonian Institution,
United States. Superintendent of Documents. Checklist of United States Public Documents, 1789-1909, Third Edition Revised and Enlarged, Volume 1, Lists of Congressional and Departmental Publications. Washington. UNT Digital Library. http://digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc1029/. Accessed May 6, 2016.