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Cataloging Toolbox for U.S. Federal Government Information

Cataloging Records Sources

Sources of GPO Cataloging Records.


  • FDLP Sources of GPO Cataloging Records - consult this guide maintained by the FDLP for the most current information.
  • The Catalog Record Distribution Program (CRDP) began October 2009. The FDLP distributes monthly bibliographic records to over 260 Federal depository libraries through a contract with Marcive, Inc. at no charge to participating depository libraries.
  • Records are available on the CGP on GitHub repository. Users may freely download record sets extracted from the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications. MARC records are available in the UTF-8, MARC-8, and MARCXMIL formats. Available record sets include:
  • Access this FDLP Academy tutorial by LCSM staff  to more learn about free GPO catalog records available via GitHub.


Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP) "... is the finding tool for electronic and print publications from the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of the U.S. government. These publications make up the National Bibliography of U.S. Government Publications. The CGP contains descriptive records for historical and current publications and provides direct links to those that are available online" (About the CGP) The CGP includes more than 500,000 records since 1976- , is updated daily and publicly available. Advanced search options are available. The CGP succeeded the print Monthly Catalog of United States Government Publications, which dated from the passage of the Printing Act of 1895 and ceased publication in 2004. Although CGP now includes many Historic Shelflist records from the 1800s-1992, printed issues of the Monthly Catalog should be consulted for pre-1976 indexing.

  • Access to the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP) via Z39.50 now available to Depository Libraries, allowing staff to log into the catalog and download records. Z39.50 instruction article. 
  • Historic Shelflist transcription update (FDLP News and Events message, Feb. 2019). Approximately 75% of the Historic Shelflist is transcribed with over 200,000 records added to the CGP and approximately 144,000 records in OCLC. GPO plans to complete the remaining 25%.


WorldCat contains GPO records from 1976- , plus earlier cataloging records contributed by other OCLC member institutions. Downloads available to subscribers only. Updated daily, GPO's Cataloging Branch creates records in this database. OCLC WorldShare Metadata Collection Manager has integrated the earlier OCLC GovDoc service.


Documents Data Miner 3 

DDM3 is a follow up to Documents Data Miner© and DDM2. No specific browser is required, but users must have cookies and javascript turned on. Registration is required. DDM3 offers a database of GPO MARC Records - the "MARC LOCATOR" which includes all MARC records created by GPO Cataloging Branch from December 1998 to present, over 206,000 records in October 2003. Records are searchable by: OCLC number, Item or SuDoc numbers, Agency (from 1xx fields), Title, Title Key Words, Subject (from 6xx fields), or Format. Accessed records may be viewed in DDM3's public view, MARC view, downloaded to user's PC for import into local databases, or accessed via the Web for records containing PURLs. Records may be downloaded into OPACs individually or batched. Records may be tagged by depository profiles.



MarciveWeb DOCS and the MARCIVE Enhanced GPO Database are available only to subscribers. The backfile (1976- ) includes the results of a project with Louisiana State University, Texas A & M University, and Rice University in which corrections and changes as posted to the Monthly Catalog were applied, records for dead and infrequent serials were examined and corrected, incorrect MARC tagging was corrected, and many other improvements (including authorities processing) were made to the records to make them more usable. Records may be saved and downloaded in MARC format. New records are made available monthly through either Ongoing Subscription or Documents Without Shelves. Ongoing service can be supplemented with weekly Shipping List Service (brief MARC records, SuDoc labels, smart barcode labels).


ProQuest, a commercial publisher, makes MARC records available to its collections. Also see the ProQuest "Government Information MARC record" Libguide for more information.


Sources of Non-GPO Cataloging Records

MAchine-Readable Cataloging (MARC) Records for SciTech Connect

The Department of Energy Office of Scientific and Technical Information offers free MARC records for the full-text reports available via SciTech Connect. Over 200,000 reports can be downloaded by year or by subject category. Records are for documents dating primarily from 1991 forward and were produced by DOE, the DOE contractor community, and/or DOE grantees. Legacy documents from DOE and predecessor agencies, the Atomic Energy Commission and the Energy Research and Development Administration, are added as they become available in electronic format. FAQ available.


MARCIVE, Inc. sells ERIC MARC Records. The backfile covers the 435,662 title commercially-sold set of microfiche that dates from the 1950s to 2004. About 70% of the records have URLs that link directly to the documents. MARCIVE also has the Internet-only titles from 2004 to the present. The ongoing subscription files are issued irregularly through the year and includes any URL updates to the microfiche records.

Although ERIC records are included in other indices, the patron has to consciously think to use them. An architecture student would never think to look here for information on building cafeterias, nor would a psychology student think to look here for topics such as workplace stress. When these records are loaded into the online database, students find them through keyword access and can click on the links and go directly to the document. The FAQ contains more information. For pricing, sample records, and references, please contact MARCIVE.