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Federal Government Documents and Information: About the Department

This guide introduces patrons to government information sources available to members of the Morgan Community

About the Department

Richardson Library is the selective repository for Federal Government Documents in Maryland’s 7th Congressional District.  Morgan became a member of the FDLP in 1940 and has continuously expanded its collection and services to meet the research and teaching needs of the Morgan community.  As a member of the FDLP, Richardson Library plays an important role in providing Federal Government information to the public and to the Morgan Community especially. FDLP libraries collaborate on a local and national level to provide informed access to both historical and current Federal Government resources distributed through the FDLP and deposited in libraries across the country.

Morgan State represents a large and diverse community with a broad range of intellectual interests and activities.  The department will continue to serve as a partner in preparing new leaders and facilitating innovative research in the new century and beyond.

Find out more about our department below:  Facts and Figures, What We Do, Current Projects and Future Plans.

Facts and Figures

  • The collection includes about 150,000 documents, 100,000 microfiche and several hundred CDs and DVDs,
  • 3698 documents acquired in FY 2019,
  • 514 resources used in FY 2018
  • 2216 resources used in FY 2019,
  • Approximately 200 reference requests for Government documents and information in FY 2019,
  • Fifth oldest FDLP library among HBCUs.

What We Do

Every day the staff of the Government Documents Department work to help members of the Morgan community and the public navigate and understand the vast quantity of information generated by the U.S. and state and local governments.

Any Day in Gov Docs:

  • Teach workshops on finding Supreme court cases, navigating a wide range of government websites like Congress.gov and agency resources like the FTA and FCC,
  • Helping patrons find passages in the Congressional Record, pending and recent legislation, information about congress members,
  • Locating print resources in the collection,
  • Finding statistical data from a wide range of sources like data.census.gov, NCES, the Department of Transportation.

Future Plans

  • Complete integration and retrospective cataloging of the collection,
  • Increase number of workshops and diversity of subjects offered,
  • Raise awareness through advertising and promotional activities,
  • Develop workshops on text analysis for Government Documents,
  • Establish community and university partnerships to promote engagement in the 2020 Census,
  • Develop new research ideas using government information,
  • Continue professional development to keep apprised of developments in government information resources and services.

Current Projects

In the last two years the Government Documents Department at Richardson Library has prioritized increasing visibility and accessibility to both the print collection and online resources through partnerships with other departments and faculty who can benefit in research and teaching.  Our efforts include:

  • Preparing cataloging data for nearly 9,000 documents,
  • Decreasing the amount of time between receipt of documents to cataloging from up to 3 years to 30 days,
  • Weeding irrelevant and unused documents from the collection,
  • Integrating monographs and serials into a single coherent collection,
  • Becoming an affiliate of the Maryland State Data Center,
  • Establishing the GIS Hub to serve as a single point of service for GIS data,
  • Participate in observances like Constitution Day and the 65th Anniversary of Brown vs. Board of Education,
  • Increasing utilization of Government information resources by 400% over the last two years.
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