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Agriculture Experiment Station Documents - Search Strategies: Search Strategies

Locating agricultural experiment/extension/cooperative service station publications can be challenging due to the way they are cataloged. This guide will show strategies to locate these documents quickly and efficiently.

Known Title

When looking for a specific extension publication and you know the title, for example, Wheat, barley, and oat silages for beef cattle by James W Oltjen and Keith Bolsen. Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station, 1978, follow these steps:

  1. Look up the title, i.e. Wheat, barley, and oat silages for beef cattle, in WorldCat.
  2. Identify the corporate author, the series title and the number of the publication.
    For instance, Series: Bulletin ;; 613; Variation: Bulletin (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) ;; 613., whereas "Bulletin" is the series title, "613" is the number, and "Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station" is the corporate author.
  3. Copy the corporate author (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) and return to the MSU Library Catalog.
  4. Select Author.
  5. Paste or type in the corporate author, Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station.
  6. If multiple corporate authors come up, select the one best matching the author from the WorldCat record.
  7. In the list of results, scroll down until you see the series title, and select it.
    In this example, "Bulletin" is approximately seventh in the list.
  8. At the top of the record, you will see the series title and author and publisher. Below that is call number information [CALL # S63.E23], and the holdings by number of what is located at MSU [Library Has no.1-no.638,no.640-no.654,no.656-no.658 (1888-1991)].
    From this information you can tell if MSU owns the document you need and the call number necessary to locate it in the Library.
    In our example, Bulletin 613 is here [no.1-no.638] and is located at S63.E23.

Known Author

When looking for a specific extension publication and you know the author, for example, James Oltjen, follow these steps:

  1. Look up the author, Oltjen, James (Last name, First name), in WorldCat.
  2. Identify the specific publication your are looking for and click on it.
    For instance, his 1978 publication Wheat, barley, and oat silages for beef cattle.
  3. Identify the corporate author, the series title and the number of the publication.
    For instance, Series: Bulletin ;; 613; Variation: Bulletin (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) ;; 613., whereas "Bulletin" is the series title, "613" is the number, and "Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station" is the corporate author.
  4. Copy the corporate author (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) and return to the MSU Library Catalog.
  5. Select Author.
  6. Paste or type in the corporate author, Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station.
  7. If multiple corporate authors come up, select the one best matching the author from the WorldCat record.
  8. In the list of results, scroll down until you see the series title, and select it.
    In this example, "Bulletin" is approximately seventh in the list.
  9. At the top of the record, you will see the series title and author and publisher. Below that is call number information [CALL # S63.E23], and the holdings by number of what is located at MSU [Library Has no.1-no.638,no.640-no.654,no.656-no.658 (1888-1991)].
    From this information you can tell if MSU owns the document you need and the call number necessary to locate it in the Library.
    In our example, Bulletin 613 is here [no.1-no.638] and is located at S63.E23.

Known Corporate Author and Series Title

When you know the corporate author and the series title and number, you can try locating the call number using a keyword search of the MSU online catalog.

  1. Go to the MSU Library's online catalog search page and select keyword.
  2. Type in the state name, experiment or extension, station, and the series title.
  3. For instance: Kansas experiment station bulletin. You do not need to type 'and' between the terms.
  4. Titles will come up based on relevancy. Scroll down the page to find the correct series title. Click on the correct title to find the call number and it's location.
  5. If the series title does not come up, modify your search by using different keywords, for instance, service instead of station, extension instead of experiment, etc.
  6. If your series titles still does not come up, consult the section "When you know the series title and the state" to look up the information in Worldcat.

Known Series Title and State

When looking for an extension publication and you know the series title and the state where it was published, for example, Bulletin 613 from the Kansas Experiment Station, follow these steps:

  1. Access the database WorldCat.
  2. Search for Bulletin as a word in the title, and Kansas and Station as authors.
  3. Scroll down until you have identified the correct series title, and select it.
  4. Identify the corporate author, the series title and the number of the publication.
    For instance, Series: Bulletin ;; 613; Variation: Bulletin (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) ;; 613., whereas "Bulletin" is the series title, "613" is the number, and "Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station" is the corporate author.
  5. Copy the corporate author (Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station) and return to the MSU Library Catalog.
  6. Select Author.
  7. Paste or type in the corporate author, Kansas Agricultural Experiment Station.
  8. If multiple corporate authors come up, select the one best matching the author from the WorldCat record.
  9. In the list of results, scroll down until you see the series title, and select it.
    In this example, "Bulletin" is approximately seventh in the list.
  10. At the top of the record, you will see the series title and author and publisher. Below that is call number information [CALL # S63.E23], and the holdings by number of what is located at MSU [Library Has no.1-no.638,no.640-no.654,no.656-no.658 (1888-1991)].
    From this information you can tell if MSU owns the document you need and the call number necessary to locate it in the Library.
    In our example, Bulletin 613 is here [no.1-no.638] and is located at S63.E23.

Subject Guide

Suzanne Teghtmeyer
Contact:
Main Library
366 W. Circle Dr.
East Lansing, MI 48824
517-884-0894
teghtmey@msu.edu


Website / Blog Page

Print Resouces

Here's a short list of the classc print resources to USDA publications:

List of publications of the Agriculture department, 1862-1902, with analytical index / Prepared in the Office of the Superintendent of documents, Government printing office.
Series: Bibliography of United States public documents. Department list no. 1
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5075.U5 U56

Index to publications of the United States Department of Agriculture, 1901-1925 / Mary A. Bradly, assisted by Mabel G. Hunt.
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5075.U5 U53 1925

Index to publications of the United States Department of agriculture, 1926-1930 / Compiled by Mary A. Bradley.
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5075.U5 U53 1930

Index to publications of the United States Department of agriculture 1931-1935 / Compiled by Mary A. Bradley.
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5075.U5 U53 1935

Index to publications of the United States Department of agriculture, 1936-1940 / edited by Mary A. Bradley, assistant editor of indexes, Division of publications, Office of information.
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5075.U5 U53 1940

Dictionary catalog of the National Agricultural Library, 1862-1965
MSU Library Has volumes 1-73
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z881 .U6 1967

National Agricultural Library catalog
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z881 .U6

Bibliography of agriculture / U.S. Department of Agriculture, Library.
MSU MAIN LIBRARY - Z5073 .U5

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