United States. Bureau of Education / Public libraries in the United States of America; their history, condition, and management. Special report, Department of the Interior, Bureau of Education. Part I
Cutter, C. A.
Chapter XXVII. Library catalogues, pp. 526-622
CHAPTER XXVII. LIBRARY CATALOGUES. BY C. A. CUTTER, Librarian of the Boston AII/enwmun. I. WiiAT HIN) OF CATALOGUE: GENERAL REMARKS : 1. AUTIIOR-CATALOGUE ;2. SUBJECT-CATALOGUCE: a. GENERAL REEMARKS; b. CLASSEDC; . DICTIONARXV; d. ALPHA. BETICO-CLASSED; e. COMBINED ; f. SOME OTHERS ; g. COM'PARISON; h. SOME OTHER POINTS.-II. W]hETHER TO PRINT: 1. ADVANTAGES AND DISADVANTAGES OF BOTH COURSES; 2. SOME DETAILS OF MANAGEMENT- 111. TABLES: 1. CLASSIFICATION OF CATALOGUES ; 2. COMPARISON OF CATALOGUES, 3. COST OF PRINTING; 4. CIIRONO- LOGICAL lIsT OF AMERICAN CATALOGUES. 1.-WHAT KIND OF CATALOGUE. It is fortunate for those who have the use of a library if their number is so small and their character so high that they can be admitted to the shelves and select their books on actual examination. As that is often not the case, a catalogue becomes necessary, and, even when it is th6 case, if the books are numerous there must be some sort of guide to insure the quick finding of any particular book. The librarian can furnish some assistance, but his memory, upon which he can rely for books in general use, is of noavail for those which are sometimes wanted very much, although not wanted often. And a librarian without a cata. logue would be utterly overpowered by the demands arising with a large circulation. In a library used entirely for desaltory reading, like most private circulating libraries, and many town libraries, the catalogue may be very simple; as soon as the books begin to be used for study it must become more elaborate. The latter is alone worth considering, for of the few difficulties of the simpler plan the greater part will be found in the more complex.' A catalogue is designed to answer certain questions about a library, and that is the best which answers the most questions with the least trouble to the asker. It may, however, for reasons of economy, decline to answer certain classes of inquiries with very little practical loss of utility, and different libraries may properly make different selections 'It may be as well to say now that in the following pages reference is had chiefly to our larger town and city, and to our college libraries. Many statements would be totally inapplicable to the great European libraries, which count their fIuds by ten thousands and their volumes by hundred thousands, and many things need modification with reference to very small town libraries; but it is impossible to hedge round every sentence with tle necessary limitations, and the reader is requested to bear this note in mind. 526
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