The Lighthouse

the lighthouse

05 July 2013

From the library

It's been a while since I've done any real cataloguing, so who knows how out of the loop I am. I'm just catching up on forthcoming changes with the shift from AACR2 to RDA (the world of librarianship is nearly as exciting as that of covert ops - just look at our acronyms!)

I have noticed a subject heading that makes me chuckle:
650 00 $a Immortalism $v Fiction

Immortalism?  Huh. Is that something you can study? A code to live by like relativism and conservatism? "Hi, I'm Tess, and I'm an immortalist." 

Just watch out for pesky typos that turn you into an immoralist.

And, from the humour files:
Early yesterday afternoon, a woman entered the library, and before we could see her, we heard her as her voice boomed out to fill the building as she said, "This is a VERY small library. There are some libraries that are 20 or 30 times bigger than this!"

Turns out she was touring around a young girl from Nunavut and wanted to reassure her that Ontario does have large libraries.

It's not the number of books you have that counts, but how you use them, right?


  1. Yes, definitely how you use the books:).On a different note... do you use the Library of Congress system of cataloging books? I am cataloging books for the summer, and having a great time, but I have a few books that I have to create a call number for (there is none to be found) and although I am pretty close I would love to find an 'extremely' detailed outline to help me. Any ideas? Just thought that I would ask since I know that you are a librarian.

    God bless,

  2. Hello, Frances
    I haven't used LC since I worked in a medical library years ago (Dewey and LCSH since then) but I have access to tools.
    Have you tried searching the Library of Congress catalogue or other national libraries for your titles? You could copy catalogue from them. If not, I will hunt something down for you. Librarians stick together, right?
    Feel free to email me (evertess at if you'd like. I enjoy a good puzzle!


    You probably have this bookmarked already - the Library of Congress outline

  4. Thank you so much Tess, and, yes, I do have the Library of Congress website bookmarked (and all of the word files saved on the Library computer--just in case). I was asking because once in a while I run across a book that has not LC catalog number and I have to do it myself... so I was curious if there was a book out there that gets into the nitty-gritty details. :).

    Thanks again, and God bless,

  5. Boy oh boy! There sure is a book - or a multi-volume set of books that goes deep into the nitty-gritty of cataloguing with LC. The full run of schedules is something like 40 volumes (I remember it taking up a full bay of bookshelves in school). A subscription to the online version runs about $300. Are you primarily cataloguing books in one subject area? I wonder if you'd be able to lay your hands on the volumes you need from a library or college that no longer uses the print version. Dewey is easier - I could set you up no problem but LC is more specialized and hasn't crossed my path very often.

    Cataloguers stick together!