Cataloging News

by Louise Ratliff

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Fall is a relatively slow time of year for cataloging updates, since news from the ALA Annual Conference was reported earlier.



Andrew_300pxThis fall, however, marks the publication by ALA Editions of RDA, Resource description & access and cartographic resources, written by Paige Andrew, Susan Moore, and Mary Lynette Larsgaard.

This eagerly-anticipated resource does not fail to deliver! In a clear and easy-to-read style, it covers past practices in cartographic cataloging, an overview of RDA, practices that are the same or different, and an explanation of how to navigate RDA. It presents a solid explication of descriptive cataloging under RDA, and includes numerous examples of MARC fields to illustrate each instruction. Map catalogers still need to be familiar with standard tools such as Cartographic Materials: A Manual of Interpretation for AACR2, Second Edition, and the Library of Congress’s Map Cataloging Manual; this text will take them into the realm of RDA for cataloging cartographic resources. Designed for both practicing map catalogers and catalogers new to cartographic resources, it is available from ALA Editions at



MAGIRT – A Task Group of the Cataloging and Classification Committee of MAGIRT (Map & Geospatial Information Round Table) is continuing its work on Best practices for cataloging cartographic resources using RDA. A draft was shared at ALA Annual in June, but more work remains to be done. When finalized, it will be posted on the MAGIRT Libguide at By the way, in addition to comprehensive information about MAGIRT and its activities, this guide also contains numerous resources of help to the map and geospatial communities. Take a look!

RBMS — Editorial work continues on the new Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Cartographic), or DCRM(C), a part of the Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (DCRM) suite, under the oversight of the DCRM Steering Group, a subcommittee of the Bibliographic Standards Committee of the ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section. The current DCRM documents are based on the AACR2 cataloging code and do not include changes brought about by RDA. The editorial team is currently working on the Glossary. The next step will be a “close reading” of the entire publication, followed by publication in 2015, when it will be available for free download. You can follow the editorial process and download the current draft from the DCRM(C) wiki at

In order to provide cataloging guidance for the usage of RDA, in August the RBMS Bibliographic Standards Committee approved a new charge:

Under the aegis of the RBMS Bibliographic Standards Committee (BSC) and reporting to the BSC Chair, create an initial version of a consolidated Descriptive Cataloging for Rare Materials (DCRM) standard based on RDA (Resource Description and Access), building on the terminology, structure, and examples in RDA. Where appropriate, enlarge the scope of DCRM to include resources not covered in the present suite of DCRM manuals. In order to accomplish this task, the group will: engage the rare materials community throughout the development process through postings on a dedicated wiki, discussion on DCRM-L, and in meetings at Midwinter and Annual conferences; coordinate activity with the DCRM Steering Group; and communicate with format specialist communities, such as MLA, MAGIRT, and CONSER.



Meagan Calogeras (Support Librarian, Government Documents & Maps Department, University of Hawai’i at Manoa Library) has just published a report in Japanese on cataloging Captured Japanese Maps (Japanese Imperial maps captured by the Allied occupation) in the Gaihozu Kenkyu Newsletter No. 11: ハワイ大学マノア校ハミルトン図書館における外邦図、内邦図の新たな発見と確認 The English-language article title is Captured Japanese Maps: Discovery and Cataloging at the University of Hawai’i at Manoa Library.

Meagan apologizes that it is written in Japanese, but she thinks that it is important to publish it where the Japanese community can learn what is happening in a U.S. research library. Her article is the fifth entry in the table of contents: The link to the pdf alone is here: For non-Japanese readers, there are some interesting illustrations, and a bibliography that cites articles about Japanese mapping.

Margaret Grimm reports on a new map collection within the Iowa Digital Library. A multi-year collaboration between the University of Iowa Libraries and the Iowa Geological Survey has culminated in the creation of the Iowa Historic Sheet Map Collection, viewable at The metadata for images in this collection consists of data from both MARC records and Dublin Core metadata.


ALA MIDWINTER MEETING, Chicago, IL, Jan. 30-Feb. 3, 2015

Cartographic resources meetings to look for:

MAGIRT usually hosts a map-related “field trip” event on Friday afternoon, with a Dutch-treat dinner afterwards.
MAGIRT GIS Discussion Group usually meets on Saturday morning at 8:30, followed by the Map Collection Management Discussion at 10:30 in the same location.
ALCTS CaMMS/MAGIRT Cartographic Resources Cataloging Interest Group usually meets Sunday morning at 8:30
MAGIRT Cataloging and Classification Committee (CCC) Meeting, Sunday morning at 10:30.



Please let me know about your own “cataloging news and notes,” which I will be happy to cover in the next issue. Contact me (Louise Ratliff) at

Stay calm and catalog on!

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