[LIS-Forum] Fascinating Facts of Library of Congress

DINESH SIDDAIAH dinesh.ncet at gmail.com
Mon Jan 5 16:13:49 IST 2009

Dear Friends,

Fascinating Facts of Library of Congress


The Library was founded in 1800, making it the oldest federal cultural
institution in* *the nation. On August 24, 1814, British troops burned the
Capitol building (where the Library was housed) and destroyed the Library's
core collection of 3,000 volumes. On January 30,
1815, Congress approved the purchase of Thomas Jefferson's personal library
of 6,487 books for $23,950.

The Library of Congress is the largest library in the world, with more than
138 million items on approximately 650 miles of bookshelves. The collections
include more than 32 million books and other print materials, 2.9 million
recordings, 12.5 million photographs, 5.3 million maps, 5.5 million pieces
of sheet music and 61 million manuscripts.


The Library receives some 22,000 items each working day and adds
approximately 10,000 items to the collections daily. The majority of the
collections are received through the Copyright registration process, as the
Library is home to the U.S. Copyright Office. Materials are also acquired
through gift, purchase, other government agencies (state, local and
federal), Cataloging in Publication (a pre-publication arrangement with
publishers) and exchange with libraries in the United States and abroad.
Items not selected for the collections or other internal purposes are used
in the Library's national and international exchange programs. Through these
exchanges the Library acquires material that would not be available
otherwise. The remaining items are made available to other federal agencies
and are then available for donation to educational institutions, public
bodies and nonprofit tax-exempt organizations in the United States.

*International Collections*

Since 1962, the Library of Congress has maintained offices abroad to
acquire, catalog and preserve library and research materials from countries
where such materials are essentially unavailable through conventional
acquisitions methods. Overseas offices in New Delhi (India), Cairo (Egypt),
Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Jakarta (Indonesia), Nairobi (Kenya) and Islamabad
(Pakistan) collectively acquire materials from more than 60 countries and
acquire materials on behalf of United States libraries participating in the
Cooperative Acquisitions Program. The Library is also collaborating with
institutions around the globe to develop a World Digital


Approximately half of the Library's book and serial collections are in
languages other than English. The collections contain materials in some 470


Thanking You,


Dr. Dinesh K. S.
Selection Grade Librarian,
Nagarjuna College of Engineering & Technology,
Devanahalli, Bengaluru - 562 110.

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