We’re Having an FDLP Anniversary!

On December 19th, 1963, Senators Carl Hayden and Barry Goldwater designated the State of Arizona Research Library as a regional Federal Depository Library for the state of Arizona.

A Federal Depository Library is a library that has agreed to make U.S. government information available to the public. There are more than 1100 of these libraries that make up a national network, and 11 of them are in Arizona. This map will show you the location of all of the Federal Depositories in the United States, including the ones right here in Arizona.

fdlp logo

What kinds of things count as “government information”?

We collect federal agency publications from more than 100 agencies across all three branches of government. You can find everything from Supreme Court opinions to Congressional hearings to topographic maps of the White Mountains here at the library. Whenever the Census Bureau releases new data, or NASA publishes a new study of Mars, these materials join nearly 200 years of history in our Federal Documents Collection.

Our collection is made up of many formats. Most of our items are in print, which includes books, newsletters, pamphlets, and Braille books. We also have maps, microfiche and microfilm, CDs and DVDs, kits, posters, calendars, and even puzzles!

Libraries in the United States have been collecting government information and making it available to Americans for almost as long as the country has existed. In 1813, Congress began distributing official publications to libraries, and in 1895 formally established the Federal Depository Library Program or FDLP. Thus libraries all over the nation were called to action to ensure the people could learn about their government.

The Territorial Library of Arizona was established in 1864 in Prescott, the Territorial Capitol at the time. The earliest library catalog we have is from 1865. This excerpt from the handwritten list of books in the library shows that we were collecting federal publications at least that early – the Territorial Library included the full Eighth U.S. Census, Smithsonian Institution publications, and reports of the Department of Agriculture, Indian Bureau, and Land Office:

S.T.A.R.L. Library catalog from 1865

In 1962, a major change was made to the Federal Depository Library Program. With the Depository Library Act of 1962, up to two libraries in each state could be designated as Regional Depository Libraries. These libraries would be responsible for maintaining complete collections of government publications, and providing services to the other depository libraries in their state, with the goal of ensuring that everyone in their state was able to access government information easily. In 1963, both the Arizona Department of Library and Archives (later to become the State of Arizona Research Library) and the University of Arizona were jointly designated as regional depository libraries by our two Senators at the time, Carl Hayden and Barry Goldwater.

Hayden-Goldwater designation of the Arizona Department of Library and Archives and U of A library as Regional Depository Libraries- 1963

 

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Publications we received in 1963 include “Effects of drought in the Colorado River Basin,” “Damage to livestock from radioactive fallout in event of nuclear war,” and hearings before the Committee on Un-American Activities.

The University of Arizona library is no longer a regional depository library, but it is still in the FDLP, along with 10 other libraries in Arizona. As the sole remaining Regional, the State of Arizona Research Library serves as a statewide hub for U.S. government information and provides services to the other depository libraries and to the public.

 

Want more information?

Check out this short history of the FDLP: Fulfilling Madison’s Vision – the Federal Depository Library Program.

Coming soon: a timeline of the history of the State of Arizona Research Library as a Federal Depository Library!

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Researching the Old Legal Stuff

YaleWe recently purchased The Yale Law School Guide to Research in American Legal History, a new resource to help you find historical legal information that is very specialized or pre-dates the information that is readily available online. Some of the resources are digitized, and some only in print. It is available to use in the Reading Room at the Polly Rosenbaum Archives and History Building.

For example, if you are looking for the laws on witchcraft, this source tells you step-by-step how to find them. Witchcraft was originally designated as a felony in the United Kingdom and carried the death penalty. Later revisions passed by Queen Elizabeth I reduced the severity of the penalty if nobody got hurt. This change enabled herbalists to practice their craft. Maybe this was the origin of the No Harm, No Foul standard.

Yale TOC

Later chapters address later eras. Apparently practice manuals were widely used in the Colonial era by justices, officials, and educated citizens. Some states had constitutions that predated the adoption of the Federal Constitution, and this reference has information on both, as well information on how to access statutes and cases from the early days of the Republic. Later chapters explain how the Reporter system for publishing case law was a pioneering innovation, how to do archival research, searching administrative law, and the advent of legal forms.

 

DictionariesAnother chapter discusses how international law and treaties affect U.S. law. Another introduces the use of dictionaries and biographical sources. The book concludes with tips for researching newspapers, statistical resources, and public records.

If you don’t know where to find the historical legal topic you are researching, we may just look here first!

Ever wonder about Federal Depository Libraries?

free-gov

This post from Free Government Information might seem a little inside baseball to some, but it does a great job explaining why the Federal Depository Library Program (of which the State Library is a member) is so important to both preserving and accessing information produced by the federal government.

For more background info, check out our Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/StateLibAZ/timeline?ref=page_internal

To read the article:

http://freegovinfo.info/node/11549

Wondering about provisional patent applications?

A provisional patent application can be a useful way of establishing a filing date for your invention while you develop the idea, conduct your patentability search, or draft your nonprovisional utility patent application. For more information, check out the article: The Provisional Patent Application: Is it for Me? in the January 2017 issue of The Inventor’s Eye!

https://www.uspto.gov/learning-and-resources/newsletter/inventors-eye/provisional-patent-application-it-me

USPTO Patent Filing Webinar

noun_201421_patentpendingThinking about filing a patent, but confused by the application options? Check out the USPTO’s upcoming webinar:

DATE AND TIME

Mon, January 23, 2017

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM EST

DESCRIPTION

Are you an inventor looking to protect your idea but unsure of which application to file?

Then join us as we go over the differences between Utility and Design Patent applications and the advantages of filing a Provisional and/or Non Provisional Utility Patent Application.

We will also go over the different forms, fees, and formalities required for the respective type of application.

This interactive presentation will allow online users to send questions via the chat function to have them answered live!

Registration Link:

https://www.eventbrite.com/e/the-different-types-of-patent-applications-tickets-29490635284

This is an outside event; please follow links above for more information.

Veterans in AZ: Telling Their Story With Census Data

The U.S. Census Bureau collects demographic, social, and economic data on veterans.  Such data includes unemployment rate, household income, business ownership, period of service, educational attainment, health care and age distribution. The data is used for policy analysis, program planning, and budgeting of veteran programs.

As we celebrate those who have served in the U.S. Armed Forces this Veterans Day, come learn about this important part of Arizona’s citizenry. This is a hands-on training; participants will be on-line with the Instructor following along with their own computer/laptop to learn how to navigate the census website and access Veteran’s data.

Presented by Pauline Nunez, U.S. Census Bureau

Date: Tuesday November 1, 2016

Time: 9:00 a.m.

Location: Webinar

To Register for this webinar: https://census.webex.com/census/k2/j.php?MTID=t7d8b03c3faebaccae1992708856adf86

 

Learn to use WESTLAW!

July 26, 2016 – Westlaw Basics

Westlaw Flyer Final

Are you new to legal research? Want to learn to use one of the most common legal research databases?

Join us to learn how to use Westlaw. Presented by Kay Engler, Esq. Westlaw Government Account Manager.

  • Research and retrieve case law and statutes
  • Find annotations for statutes
  • Find out if a case or law has been changed or overruled

Date: Tuesday July 26, 2016

Time: 11:00 a.m. – 12:00 noon

Location: State Library of Arizona, Con Cronin Commons

To register: http://www.azlibrary.gov/events/1683