Friday, March 1, 2013

World Cat and Interlibrary Loan




   Is é Márta an mhí le haghaidh taighde na hÉireann.
Is mian liom leat ádh mór maith!





I wanted to give a quick mention to World Cat and interlibrary loan just in case any of you are not familiar with it. I just got notified by the Euchee Creek library that two interlibrary loan books I ordered are in and that is what made me think about it.

World Cat is an electronic card catalog that includes most of the public libraries in the country and many from around the world. You can search for books and if you find something that you like, you can request it via interlibrary loan. You cannot get a book (or microfilm) by interlibrary loan if it is catalogued as a reference material. You will be asked to pay for the postage to get the item to your local library. The library will ask you upfront what the max you will pay is. The ones that I just ordered cost me $3. All you do is give the librarian the publication info. They put it into the computer and the computer decides which library it will come from. I just print the page from World Cat and give that to the librarian.

Another thing you use World Cat for is to see if the library that has this book is within driving distance and then you don’t have to order it. You put in your zip code and it will give you a list of libraries that have that book in order of distance. That is how I find books at the Special Collections room at Augusta State University. They have a really nice collection and they are very friendly there. All of their books are catalogued as reference material so I can’t get them on interlibrary loan anyway.

Right now I happen to be researching three brothers that fought in the War of 1812. They enlisted on the same day in the same unit. What is odd is that they were from Mississippi but they joined a Louisiana unit. What is even odder is that one of the brothers was a lieutenant in the Mississippi Militia (pre war) and then resigned and joined the Louisiana unit as a private. I thought the following two books might give me some background information that would help me understand this:

  • Rowland, Eron. Mississippi Territory in the War of 1812. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1968.
  • Casey, Powell A. Louisiana in the War of 1812. Baton Rouge, Louisiana: privately published, 1963.

I found them on World Cat and ordered them via interlibrary loan.

Copyright © 2013 Michele Simmons Lewis


  1. Love the IRE picture and the Gaelic! You can also order DVD's thru Interlibrary loans too! I rent all my DVD's from the library and became obsessed with Upstairs Downstairs from the late 70's. Our public library was missing some so I went to our military base library and filled out the form and 2 days later got a very upsetting email that said NOT AVAILABLE! Grrrr

  2. I have seen every episode of Upstairs Downstairs...twice :)

  3. Really??? My library had missing episodes of Upstairs/Downstairs and was so frustrated that I left off at the end of Season 2 and I'm too cheap to buy it. Are you a fan of DOWNTON Abbey? Love that show. I posted on Google yesterday a 2 minute clip of Maggie Smith in 2 awesome it! This is an interesting conversation because when I was catching up on some of your unread posts I saw the last name Grantham and meant to ask you if there was any connection to Lord Grantham from DOWNTON Abbey?? I am pretty sure it's based on a true story.

  4. Our local library is very small but they happen to have EVERY episode of Upstairs Downstairs :) I LOVE DOWNTON ABBY! We had a Downton Abbey party at the library where we watched the last episode of season two drinking tea and eating "biscuits." There WAS a real Earl of Grantham but it was a lot longer ago than when Downton Abbey takes place.,_1st_Earl_of_Grantham Grantham is part of the peerage title and refers to a place not a surname so no connection with my Granthams. Grantham (the place) goes all the way back to the 11th century so I am not real confident of hooking my Grantham's up with the place either :)

  5. Michele, Does this apply also to books that could only be located in French libraries? And does my local library, which is small, need to have some prior arrangements in a special system? I have found loads of free Google books written in French in U.S. and French universities' libraries, but was wondering about the loaning of the ones that are not free.
    Thank you for your very informative blog.

  6. My local library is VERY small and they have no problems at all with interlibrary loan. I went to World Cat and searched for French libraries. There are 3 pages of libraries in France that belong to World Cat. I have never tried to get a book from another country so I have no idea how expensive it would be or if the French library would even ship their book overseas but you never know!