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NUCMC, (National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections) Library of Congress
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Frequently Asked Questions on NUCMC Records and Online Searching

About NUCMC records and catalogs:

  1. Is the NUCMC catalog at the Library of Congress?
  2. Are all NUCMC records accessible in one single online catalog?
  3. Are all NUCMC records available in OCLC WorldCat?
  4. How can I search the NUCMC records online? Is there a fee?
  5. Does NUCMC provide any searching services?
  6. Are there plans for retrospective conversion of the pre-1986 NUCMC records?
  7. How can I search the pre-1986 NUCMC records? Is there a compiled index?

About Searching:

  1. Is it possible to search WorldCat without coming through the NUCMC web site?
  2. Is it possible to search the entire WorldCat catalog using the NUCMC gateway?
  3. What is the best search method to use when searching WorldCat?
  4. Whom can I contact for assistance with searching?

Interpreting Search Results and Locating Materials

  1. Does NUCMC have the archival and manuscript materials in its collection?
  2. If I find a manuscript collection by using your search site, does that mean the manuscript collection is in the Library of Congress?
  3. From my search results in OCLC WorldCat, how can I locate the materials for use?

  1. Is the NUCMC catalog at the Library of Congress?

    No. NUCMC staff create catalog records directly in OCLC WorldCat.

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  2. Are all NUCMC records accessible in one single online catalog?

    No. The NUCMC cooperative cataloging project began in 1959. From 1959 to 1993, the NUCMC catalog was produced as printed volumes. In 1986, NUCMC staff began using the RLG Union Catalog (now defunct) to produce its published catalog -- from 1986 - 1993, NUCMC records are available both online through OCLC WorldCat and in the printed volumes. Beginning in 1993, records created by NUCMC catalogers are only available in OCLC WorldCat.

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  3. Are all NUCMC records available in OCLC WorldCat?

    No. Only records created since 1986 are included in OCLC WorldCat. All records created from 1959-1985 are only available in printed volumes.

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  4. How can I search the NUCMC records online? Is there a fee?

    The Library of Congress provides a Web interface for searching the NUCMC records online in OCLC WorldCat. This service is provided free-of-charge.

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  5. Does NUCMC provide any searching services?

    No. NUCMC can assist you with problems you might be having searching OCLC WorldCat, but we cannot perform searches for you. For assistance, contact NUCMC.

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  6. Are there plans for retrospective conversion of the pre-1986 NUCMC records?

    No. There are no plans at this time.

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  7. How can I search the pre-1986 NUCMC records? Is there a compiled index?

    Each published volume of NUCMC contains an index; and, cumulative indexes were compiled approximately every five years. In addition, ArchivesUSA® -- published by Chadwyck-Healey contains the NUCMC entries. Chadwyck-Healey has also published an Index to Personal Names in the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections, 1959-1984 (2 v., 1988), and an Index to Subjects and Corporate Names in the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections, 1959-1984 (3 v., 1994). Check with your local library to locate these indexes.

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  8. Is it possible to search OCLC WorldCat without coming through the NUCMC web site?

    Maybe. If you are a paying member of OCLC, you can search WorldCat without coming through the NUCMC gateway. However, if you are not a member, your only "free" method of searching for archival and manuscript materials in WorldCat is via the NUCMC gateway.

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  9. Is it possible to search the entire OCLC WorldCat catalog using the NUCMC gateway?

    No. The Library of Congress only provides searching access to the following materials in the WorldCat database: archival and manuscript collections; mixed materials (i.e., collections that contain two or more different types of bibliographic material); and bibliographic materials that have been described using archival descriptive rules. The Library does not provide "free" access to search books or other types of material in WorldCat.

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  10. What is the best search method to use when searching OCLC WorldCat?

    The method of searching depends on your needs and your searching skills. It is often better to start with the simple search form and as you become more familiar with searching to then move to the advanced search forms. Whichever search you choose, please be sure to read the directions fully and carefully.

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  11. Whom can I contact for assistance with searching?

    If you have problems with these procedures, please contact NUCMC for assistance.

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  12. Does NUCMC have archival and manuscript materials in its collection?

    No. NUCMC is a cooperative cataloging program. We have no manuscript or archival material located in our office. If you have located material held by the Library of Congress, you should contact the division of the Library of Congress which holds that material (see Library of Congress Research Centers).

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  13. If I find a manuscript collection by using one of your search gateway forms, does that mean this manuscript collection is held by the Library of Congress?

    No. You will need to follow the instructions on the searching pages or this FAQ to locate the repositories which hold the collections you are trying to locate. If you are unable to locate the repositories using these instructions, please contact NUCMC.

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  14. From my search results in OCLC WorldCat, how can I locate the materials for use?

    From the multiple display choose "more on this record" then choose "tagged display" and locate the 040 field toward the top of the record. Make note of the letter code (e.g., DLC) located in subfield a ($a). Go to the OCLC participating institutions page, type in the letter code, and submit your search.

     

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   April 28, 2011
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