Checklist of United States Public Documents, 1789-1909, Third Edition Revised and Enlarged, Volume 1, Lists of Congressional and Departmental Publications

XVI

ANNUAL REPORTS CURTAILED BY EXECUTIVE ORDER
The Executive order of Jan. 20, 1906, issued by President Roosevelt, has had a
far-reaching effect upon the issuance of Government publications, but only the salient
features of the order can be referred to in this introduction. The order directed
that the head of each Executive Department should appoint an advisory committee
on printing and publication, and defined the duties of such committees; it also set
forth rules governing the preparation of annual reports of the Departments. Certain
large classes of matter were excluded from the annual reports; e. g., scientific treatises,
articles by persons not connected with the reporting office, biographical and
eulogistic matter relating to office personnel, texts of laws and court decisions (except
in cases of great importance), etc.
The matter so debarred from publication in the series of annual reports has since
appeared in other publications issued by the Department or its subordinate bureaus
and offices, or perhaps has escaped printing altogether. Annual reports are now
supposed to be confined to absolute essentials.
The order directed also that "Reports of officers who do not report directly to the
head of an Executive Department shall not be printed in the annual report of a
Department, but where necessary shall be summarized in the reports of the officials
to whom such officers do report." The effect of this section is most clearly noted by
reference to those annual reports of the Navy Department and its subordinate bureaus
which have been issued since the President's order became operative.
ADVANCE SHEETS OF 3D EDITION OF THE CHECKLIST
A portion of this Checklist has appeared previously in the form of "Advance sheets"
issued for the purpose of ascertaining necessary corrections and additions. They
were discontinued for reasons which were fully explained in the Monthly catalogue
for Dec. 1909, p. 227, 228, at the time of their discontinuance.
EARLY CONGRESS PAPERS
The classification (Z.) is reserved for the Papers-of the Revolutionary Period and
the first 14 Congresses. Under Z1. and Z2. are listed Government reprints of documents
and journals of the Colonial and Revolutionary period, including among other
publications the important series of American archives (Zl.l:), Elliot's debates on
adoption of Federal Constitution (Z2.1:), Diplomatic correspondence of American
Revolution (Z2.2:-Z2.4:), Journals of Continental Congress (Z2.5:-Z2.7:), etc.
Z3. includes the various miscellaneous publications, compilations, reprints, etc.,
of journals and documents of the first 14 Congresses, 1789-1817, with the exception
of the 38 volume folio edition of American state papers, classed with zero numbers
at, the head of the regular series of Congressional documents (see p. 3, 4).
The original prints of the journals, documents, and reports of the first 14 Congresses
have a special class (Z4.1:), arranged chronologically by the dates of ordering piattd.:
The cards for these original prints are a priceless possession of this office; the bibtiographical
material was collected by a careful examination of the originals themslve;i ~
in about a dozen large libraries especially rich in early Congress papers, and - ia t -rg
so voluminous, it has been decided to publish it later in separate form. This decision
relates only to the original prints of the first 14 Congresses, classed under Z4.1: Under
ZI.-Z3. in the body of this Checklist will be found entries for other Early Congress
papers.
CONGRESSIONAL SERIES
,The, Congressional series needs no introduction to Checklist readers. Its: vagaries
and idiosyncrasies are well-known and to say the least, interesting. One can not
fail to be impressed with the increase in the amount of Congressional matter by a

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 July 23, 2014.