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U.S. Government Documents Reference: Indexes & Catalogs

Indexes, catalogs, and other tools held at H-L Library

These selected resources held at H-L Library index or list U.S. government documents in various formats. The Library holds only a small proportion of the documents indexed. Please contact Barbara Levergood if you would like us to help you find documents found in these resources.


1774-1881 Poore, Benjamin Perley. A descriptive catalogue of the government publications of the United States, September 5, 1774-March 4, 1881.
48th cong., 2nd sess., S.Misc.Doc. 67, serial 2268. 1885. Via HeinOnline.
Bowdoin Office Copy Y 4.P 93/1:  G 74/1
Online: GPO, HathiTrust, JScholarship.
1789-1817 Greely, A.W. Public Documents of the First Fourteen Congresses, 1789-1817: Papers Relating to Early Congressional Documents, 1900.
Online via HathiTrust.
Also 56th cong., 1st sess, S.Doc. 428, serial 3879 via HeinOnline.
1789-1817 Greely, A.W. "Public Documents of the First Fourteen Congresses, 1789-1817", in Annual Report of the American Historical Association for the Year 1903, 343-406.
58th cong., 2nd sess, H. Doc. 745, serial 4735, 1904. HeinOnline.
Supplement to Greely 1900, with a "list of such State papers as have been discovered or located within the last two years".
1789-1909 Checklist of United States public documents 1789-1909: Congressional: to close of Sixtieth Congress; departmental: to end of calendar year 1909. 1911. (a.k.a. 1909 Checklist)
Bowdoin Govt Reference GP 3.2:C 41/2
Online: GPO, Internet Archive, HathiTrust, University of North Texas, Google Books, and
1881-1893 Ames, John. Comprehensive Index to the Publications of the United States Government, 1881-1893.
58th cong., 2nd sess, H.Doc. 754, serial 4745 and serial 4746. 1905. HeinOnline.
Bowdoin Office Copy I 15.2:In 2/3 v.1-2
Online: GPO, both volumes, Volume 1, Volume 2
1885-1894 Hickcox, John Howard. United States government publications; a monthly catalogue. 1885-1891, 1892-1896.
Bowdoin Main Libr J69.Z7 U55 1892
Also online: HathiTrust, Internet Archive.
1893-1940 Catalogue of the Public Documents of the […] Congress and of All Departments of the Government of the United States.
Bowdoin Govt Doc GP 3.6:  (We hold volumes 1-25.)
Online: GPO. Many volumes are also available from HathiTrust and Google Books.
1895-2004 Monthly catalog of United States Government publications.
Bowdoin Govt Doc GP 3.8:  (We hold most volumes, 1895-1977.)
This print publication is an index to federal documents. It is the predecessor to the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications. It includes SuDocs numbers beginning July 1924.
Online: GPO. Many volumes are also available from HeinOnline (1895-2004, under the title Monthly Catalog of United States Government Publications); HathiTrust; Internet Archive; University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
1900-1971 Cumulative Subject Index to the Monthly Catalog of United States Government Publications 1900-1971. 1973-1975.
Bowdoin Govt Doc GP 3.8/a:S 8/
July 1976- Catalog of U.S. Government Publications (CGP).
Most comprehensive catalog of U.S. government publications for this time period. Also includes some records for earlier publications. More than 500,000 records; all formats; many with links to full-text; updated daily. Bowdoin holds many, but certainly not all, of the publications in this catalog.
-Aug 1945 Documents Office Classification. Mary Elizabeth Poole. 1945.
Includes SuDocs numbers for the difficult-to-find period 1910-1924. SuDocs numbers from 1909 Checklist, invoices, price lists, monthly catalogs, classified lists, Public Documents Library in Washington.
Online: HathiTrust.
1910-1924 Documents Office Classification Numbers for Cuttered Documents, 1910-1924. Mary Elizabeth Poole and Ella Frances Smith. 1960.
Includes SuDocs numbers for the difficult-to-find period 1910-1924. Primary source was the shelf list of the GPO. These materials may also be available in the CGP.
Online: HathiTrust.
various dates WorldCat provides many records for historical and current government publications.
U.S. Federal Documents via HathiTrust is a growing database of full-text federal government publications.
HathiTrust, Internet Archive, and Google Books provide full-text of many historical and current government publications.
None of these databases is comprehensive and dates vary.

Specialized indexes and catalogs

These more specialized resources index U.S. government publications; some provide accompanying full-text. The Library holds only a small proportion of the documents indexed in print. Please contact Barbara Levergood if you would like us to help you find documents found in these resources.

15th century-present AGRICOLA. U.S. Department of Agriculture. Serves as the catalog and index to the collections of the National Agricultural Library, as well as a primary public source for world-wide access to agricultural information.
1988- Air University Library Index to Military Periodicals (AULIMP). A subject index to significant articles, news items, and editorials from English language military and aeronautical periodicals.
1966- ERIC. Education and related topics
1970-1987 Index to U.S. Government Periodicals. Main Periodical Index. Index to government periodicals offering "substantive articles of lasting research and reference value".
1964- NTRL from the National Technical Information Service (NTIS). "Worldwide searching for federally funded bibliographic science and technology research information"
1915- PAIS International. Global coverage of public and social policy, politics, and foreign affairs, including many government publications.
1789- ProQuest Congressional. Access to U.S. legislative information. Includes indexing and some links to full-text. Content Coverage Chart
1973- ProQuest Statistical Insight. 100,000 U.S. government publications from 1973 (as well as state and private sources from 1980 and approximately 2000 documents from international organizations from 1983). Incorporates ASI subject and keyword searching. Full text or web links provided for some citations. Includes Statistical Abstract of the United States.
1966- PubMed. Medicine, nursing, dentistry, veterinary medicine, healthcare systems, and preclinical sciences
unknown NCJRS (National Criminal Justice Reference Service), Dept. of Justice. "Find bibliographic information and abstracts of more than 230,000 collection resources, including over 80,000 online materials and all known Office of Justice Programs' works."

Serial Set

1817-1892 Tables of and Annotated Index to the Congressional Series of United States Public Documents. Contents of the U.S. Congressional Serial Set from the 15th through the 52d Congress (1817-1892). Via Government Document Indexes.
1817-1994 U.S. Congressional Serial Set. Contains fulltext congressional reports, documents and journals from the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Significant executive agency publications--reports of exploration, technology, finance, immigration, scientific discovery, culture, commerce and warfare included, along with all maps and illustrations. Congressional publications from 1789 to 1838, are collected in a separate database called the American State Papers. Both databases may be searched together through "Archive of Americana" links within each one.
1895-1933 Index to the Reports and Documents, 54th Congress (1895-1896)-72nd Congress (1932-1933) Commonly referred to as the Documents Index, this publication is an alphabetical subject index to publications in the U.S. Congressional Serial Set. The Documents Index continued the Tables of and Annotated Index to the Congressional Series of United States Public Documents, and represents the "consolidated index" provided for in the Printing Act of 1895. Discontinued with the 72nd Congress, 2nd Session, but parts continued in the Numerical List. Via Government Document Indexes.
1933-1980 Numerical Lists and Schedule of Volumes of the Reports and Documents, 73d Congress (1933-1934)-96th Congress (1979-1980) Commonly referred to as the Numerical List. Continues the numerical list of Congressional reports and documents and schedule of Serial Set numbers previously included in the Documents Index. Discontinued with the 96th Congress, 2nd Session, when it was issued as the Monthly Catalog – U.S. Congressional Serial Set Supplement. Via Government Document Indexes.
1983-1998 United States Congressional Serial Set Catalog, 98th Congress (1983-1984)-105th Congress (1997-1998) Continues the Numerical List, after the single issue of the Monthly Catalog – U.S. Congressional Serial Set Supplement. Via Government Document Indexes.


Indexes to significant hearings

Composite index to hearings on special Senate investigation on charges and countercharges involving, Secretary of the Army Robert T. Stevens, John G. Adams, H. Struve Hensel and Senator Joe McCarthy, Roy M. Cohn, and Francis P. Carr

Investigations of the attack on Pearl Harbor : index to government hearings
Main Ref D767.92 .I58 1990

Master index to the J.F.K. assassination investigations : the reports and supporting volumes of the House Select Committee on Assassinations and the Warren Commission
Main Ref E842.9 .M395

Subject index to the Warren report and hearings & exhibits
Main Ref E842.9 .M4

The Watergate investigation index : House Judiciary Committee hearings and report on impeachment
Main Ref KF27 .J8 1974e Suppl. 4

The Watergate investigation index : Senate Select Committee hearings and reports on presidential campaign activities
Main Ref KF26.5 .P7 1973 Suppl. 3

Subject Guides

Subject guide to U.S. government reference sources
Main Ref Z1223.Z7 R63 1996


Guide to U. S. government publications (older editions)