Library Catalog Records Tell You A Lot!

There’s a lot of information on the search result page, and it may be tempting to stop there.  But when you click on an item in the search result list, you will be taken to the record for that item, which has some additional useful information.

  • Each record will include the title, author and publication information (as far as we know – it’s amazing how many genealogy society publications don’t have dates, for example.)
  • The record will show all subject headings assigned to this item, which should give you an idea of what the book is about.
  • The Item Type will tell you whether the item is a map, a book, etc.
  • The Location will tell you where the item is stored in the library
  • The Collection will tell you what major group this item is in – Kansas books, Military Research books, etc. (This is mostly useful for library tracking and reporting.)
  • Call number will give you the ID for the item – you will need the whole thing to find it on the shelf
  • Status will tell you about the availability of the item. Available means it’s on the shelf and may be checked out by members.  Not for loan means it can only be used in the library.  Checked out means, well, checked out.  Unavailable may mean it’s missing or that we don’t have a physical copy of the item (it may be online.)

If you click on Browse Shelf next to the call number, you can see which items are on the shelf to either side of the current item.  This can be an easy way to scan books that are all shelved together, such as the books on Saline County.  Remember, though, that this reflects the physical locations of the books, and not your search results, so it will show the books that are filed in the Saline County KS section, but not Saline County maps, for example.

From the record view, you don’t have to rerun your search to see the other results.  At the upper right of the page, you have the option to move to the previous or next record in the list, or you can click Browse Results to see the complete list.