18. Government Documents

The Library is a selective depository for United States government official publications. Selected documents from state and foreign governments and international organizations are also received.            

These are shelved on the Lower Level in the compact shelving system*. Most documents circulate under the same loan rules as regular stacks books. Document periodicals circulate like regular periodicals. Most documents will not have a date-due pocket.  Stamp the due date on the yellow sticky date-due slips. Do not put pockets in Gov Doc’s.


The barcode is usually on the front cover of the item.  If there is no barcode on the item, follow the On-the-Fly instructions at the desk.

When a document is returned, check it in, remove the date-due slip, and be sure to place the document on the DOCUMENTS return shelf in the sorting area.


If not by their appearance alone, documents are easily recognized by their unique call #’s which often include markings like slashes ( / ) and colons (:). Also, be careful to note that documents can be in the form of books, pamphlets or even a single sheet of paper.

Tripod will not allow you to circulate certain documents to Haverford and Bryn Mawr patrons. Read your prompts clearly and explain to the patron that these items are non-circulating to them. Encourage them to copy what they need or to request the items through the circulation desks of their home libraries.



*If patrons experience any difficulty operating the compact shelving, refer them to a staff person.