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Documents (House or Senate)


Documents include official communication, treaties, non-governmental material (conventions). These items can be part of the Serial Set, or they can be published independently with SuDoc numbers.

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Interesting Examples of Documents:

If you can't get full text online, look at the citation. If it talks about SERIAL-VOL, then it's part of the Serial Set. If it has a SUDOC, then it's published as a separate item:

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  • Numbering for documents is H. or S. (House or Senate) Doc. (Document) number of Congress, number of document. For example, H. Doc. 108-35 "Plan Colombia/Andean Counterdrug Initiative Semi-Annual Obligation Report, Communication from the President" is a House Document from the 108th Congress numbered 35.

  • Start to look in LexisNexis. In LexisNexis, select Serial Set before 1970 and Documents after 1970. If you're looking for old documents in paper, it can be in the Serial Set or published separately. For a Serial Set:

    1. In the record, look for DOC-NO and SERIAL-VOL-NO. For example, "Bridge across Hudson River at New York City, by New York and New Jersey Bridge Company, with minority report" from 1889 is DOC-NO: H.rp.3167, 51-1 SERIAL-VOL-NO: 2816. So, we need to find the serial volume 2816, and then find H.rp.3167 in it. The 51-1 stands for the 51st Congress, 1st session.

    2. Serial Set Before 1909, your quickest option is to use the microfiche. The Serial Set is under the number JK404 .C59x in the Hecker Center microfiche cabinets. Then the actual microfiche will be numbered by the SERIAL-VOL number. There might be a few cards to cover the whole volume, so check each volume card for the report or document you're looking for. If you want the paper copy, you will need to page it from the HAY Annex. In Josiah, do a title search for Serial Set. In the results, select the Congress number to get the call number of the volume to be paged.

    3. Serial Set From 1909 onwards the Rockefeller has paper copies of the Serial Set on the Level 2. The SERIAL -VOL is the volume number. So, we're looking for volume 2816 and then, if there are more than one document in the volume, look for the DOC - NO - H.rp.3167.

    4. Serial Set From 1970 to 1988 the record will not say what volume number it's in. So, you'll need to check in the The Numerical Lists and Schedule of Volumes of the United States Congressional Serial Set (Z1223 A15x 1983 3 DOCS) or one of the supplements, which are located in the government documents reference shelf, to get the volume number. Look under the Congress number, type of document and document number to get the serial volume number.

    5. Serial Set From the late 1980s onward, most of the time you can find full text versions of the items online (graphs and maps not included). However, if you need to consult the paper item, you will need to search the Serial Set collection by Congress, document type and number as given on the spine of the book. Volume numbers are not given.

  • Or, if published separately, look for the SuDoc number:

    1. Obtain the SuDoc number from the citation and follow the instructions given in Federal Documents in Print.

Access to Information

Digital Information

Paper Information

  • Serial Set: In Josiah, do a Title search for the Serial Set. This set goes back to 1817, and is located both in the Hay and Rockefeller. This Set contains the reports and documents.

  • SuDoc: Follow the instructions given in Federal Documents in Print