The San Francisco Public Library is closed to the public until further notice by Shelter In Place Order (PDF). Access to federal documents is not physically possible at this time. While many Bay Area libraries are currently closed, there are several libraries located throughout the state that participate in the Federal Depository Library Program and may be open.
Here are some ways that you can access federal documents online:
- If you are a San Francisco Public Library card holder, you have full access to our online articles and databases site, which includes full text access to Proquest Congressional. Proquest Congressional includes legislative histories, bills, congressional member profiles, and Serial Set access. Most congressional publications date back to 1790. You must enter the portal through our articles and databases page and enter your SFPL library card number and password.
- Many of our federal titles have links to the digital version. Please check our library catalog.
- Other federal titles may be found on Hathi Trust. Not all titles have full-text access.
- The U.S. Government Publications Catalog may have digital links to the documents you are seeking.
San Francisco Public Library was designated a federal depository library in 1889. The Federal Depository Library Program (FDLP) is part of the U.S. Government Publishing Office (GPO) under Title 44 of the United States Code. Depository libraries provide free, local access to publications of public interest and educational value from all branches of the Federal government.
The SFPL collection is one of the largest and oldest in Northern California. Subject strengths include census publications for all decennial censuses, economic censuses, statistics, annual reports, legislation, statutes, codes, regulations, treaties, military history, and major publication of federal departments, for example, the U.S. Geological Survey's Professional Papers or the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics Bulletin. Congressional publications include extensive holdings of the Serial Set, hearings and House and Senate reports and documents.
The collection is partially accessible to the public in the reference area on the 5th floor but, because of the size of the collection, most documents have to be requested from the staff. Bibliographic access to the collection is available through the classic online catalog.