Welcome to Government Documents
Government documents are, quite simply, documents published by the government. They
can be reports or summaries of information the government has collected. This includes
things like census data or crop reports. They can also be advisories, regulations,
laws, or even blank forms for things like taxes. They can also be information that
is on-file with the government like corporation filings. The government collects and
publishes an amazing amount of data. Government documents exist at the federal, state,
county, and even local levels. If there is government at that level, then chances
are there are also government documents as well. Most federal and state government
documents these days are available on-line over the Internet.
The government still publishes a large amount of information in paper formats however. This is done for the federal government by the Government Printing Office (GPO). Libraries across the country sign-up with the GPO’s Federal Depository Library Program to be depository libraries. The GPO sends government publications to each depository library in the program. McKendree’s Holman Library is a federal depository library; our collection is located in the lowest level of the library. It is important to note that not every library gets everything the government publishes because that would just be too much stuff for most libraries to handle. Instead, each library only gets certain kinds of published materials. This means that McKendree’s Holman Library may not have a paper copy of what you want to find. However, chances are that another library in Illinois does, and we can probably get a copy for you with a little bit of notice.
You can find more information about depository libraries at the FDLP and GPO web pages.