Contact: Winston Tabb, Associate Librarian for Collections Services (202) 707-6240
January 19, 1995
Library of Congress Discontinues Monthly Checklist of State Publications
On December 31, 1994, the Library of Congress announced the discontinuation of the Monthly Checklist of State Publications (MCL). The Library's decision was prompted by decreased demand for this publication and the need to make more effective use of shrinking resources.
Although MCL, which first appeared in 1910, was long recognized as the "de facto" national bibliography of U.S. state publications, interest in the MCL has declined in recent years. The number of subscribers to this publication dropped 48 percent between 1989 and 1994.
The development of on-line alternatives to the Monthly Checklist has contributed to the decline in use. Records for approximately 75 percent of the titles reported in the MCL during the past year were already available on OCLC or RLIN by the time the MCL was published. In a recent Library of Congress survey of 166 U.S. and foreign research institutions, only nine respondents expressed concern about adverse consequences from termination of the MCL.
Discontinuation of the MCL will enable the Library of Congress to devote more resources to collecting U.S. state government documents aggressively, and to cataloging and making these records quickly accessible on-line through the Library's gopher system, LC MARVEL, and the MARC distribution service.
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