Answered By: Jordan Moore
Last Updated: Apr 06, 2020     Views: 56

When you look up a book in Smart Search or the catalog, the entry will tell you what level (lower, main, or upper) the book is on, and if it is available. If it is available, all you have to do is find it!

To do this, you must know how to read Library of Congress call numbers. This can be done in a few easy steps.

·         The first letter(s) describe the book’s Library of Congress classification, and are arranged alphabetically.

·         The first number(s) describe the book’s subject, and are arranged in numeric order.

·         Any letters after the first letter(s) are also arranged alphabetically, but any number after the first number(s) should be read as decimals. This is important since this means that a book with the call number QE 862 .D15 would be shelved before QE 862 .D5 because the numbers 1 and 5 are .15, not 15.

·         Books will often have publication years in their call number, which are arranged numerically as well.

See the link below from the American Museum of Natural History for more information about Library of Congress call numbers.

If you come across any trouble locating a book, you can always ask for assistance at the Information Desk!


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