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About U.S. Government Publications
The United States Government Publishing Office (GPO) is responsible for the publication and dissemination of the official publications of Congress, the White House, and other Federal agencies in digital and print formats. Print materials are made freely available to the public through the Federal Depository Library Program.
Williams College Libraries has been a depository since 1858, with a special focus on congressional materials. Items can be found by searching the library catalog and limiting the results to Resource Type: Government Documents. The majority of the print government documents collection is housed in the Library Shelving Facility. To have a document retrieved, in the Get It section of the library catalog record, sign in to your library account and then choose Request under Options.
For in-depth research assistance, contact Abigail Cahill.
Catalogs of Government Documents
Use these catalogs to determine what documents were published during a particular time. Search the library catalog and Williams WorldCat to get the full documents.
National Archives Online Public Access Catalog
The National Archives preserves documents and records of the US Federal Government. Only a portion of their collection is available online; look for records indicating online holdings.
Congressional Publications This link opens in a new window
Publication Dates: 1789-Present
Provides documents covering the full legislative process. Includes the Congressional Record
and its predecessors, bills, laws, hearings, committee prints, House and Senate documents and reports, Congressional Research Service Reports, and the U.S. Serial Set
. Full text availability varies by type of document. Learn more about these types of documents
Foreign Government Documents
Foreign Relations of the United States (FRUS) "constitutes the official record of the foreign policy of the United States. These volumes include, subject to necessary security considerations, all documents needed to give a comprehensive record of the major foreign policy decisions within the range of the Department of State's responsibility, together with appropriate materials concerning the facts which contributed to the formulation of policies." (Preface) Issued annually with multiple volumes covering different areas of the world. Learn more about FRUS.
U.S. Declassified Documents Online This link opens in a new window
Publication Dates: 1941-Present
Declassified White House, CIA, FBI, State Department documents from presidential libraries.
Digital National Security Archive (DNSA) This link opens in a new window
Publication Dates: 1945-Present
Declassified U.S. government documents, including bulletins, memos, reports, agreements (primarily acquired through FOIA requests) covering U.S. foreign policy. Arranged in discrete collections; see Collections Guide
, but can be searched across collections. See in particular collections on U.S. Nuclear History, Nuclear Non-Proliferation, Weapons of Mass Destruction, and Cuban Missile Crisis.
Presidential Papers and Materials
Public Papers of the Presidents
Call Number: Sawyer J80 .A283
Publication Dates: 1929-Present
Contains the public messages, speeches, and statements of the President.
American Presidency Project This link opens in a new window
Publication Dates: 1789-Present
Oral and written addresses, executive orders, proclamations, signing statements, press conferences, radio and TV broadcasts, party platforms, state-level presidential election returns, and more.
Presidential Oral History Program
The Miller Center at the University of Virginia is systematically and comprehensively debriefing the principal figures in the administrations of Presidents Carter, Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Clinton, and George W. Bush, with plans to do the same for future presidents, for this oral history project.