This presentation of how land-grant university libraries became federal depository libraries in 1907 examines the principal legislative statutes creating the land-grant university system. It proceeds to cover how a congressional Printing Commission, concerned with eliminating duplicative governmental publications, also produced legislation granting federal depository status to the libraries of land-grant universities. There is also discussion of the presence of GPO Access gateways at many land-grant university depositories and the continuing relevance of the land-grant university service ideal to the depository library program during its transition to an increasingly electronic environment. The historical evolution of America’s rural electric industry, community network movement, and federal information resource management initiatives also present potentially useful service models for emerging electronic depositories.


U.S. Land-Grant Universities, U.S. Federal Depository Libraries, U.S. government publishing, community information networks

Published in:

Journal of Government Information, Vol. 26, No. 4, pp. 385–404, July 1999

Date of this Version

July 1999