Guide to the Research Collections
Periodicals and Society Publications
Periodicals in agriculture may be divided into two types, those primarily of research interest and those having a more popular appeal. In all, the Research Libraries have about 900 periodical titles under the heading "Agriculture--Periodical and Society Publications" in the Public Catalog; of this number some 140 titles are currently received from more than thirty-five countries. The United States is represented by approximately 30 current periodical titles, the USSR by approximately 54. There is a good number from Latin America, including Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, and Puerto Rico; Oriental titles come primarily from India and Japan.
Periodical holdings range in date from the eighteenth century to the present. From the eighteenth century are titles such as the Museum Rusticum et Commerciale
(1763-66) and the Corps d'observations
(1757-58) of the Société d'Agriculture de Commerce, et des Arts de Bretagne. There are good holdings of the farm journals which commenced or flourished during the nineteenth century in America; of these the library has substantial files, including American Agriculturist
(1842- , incomplete file), Country Gentleman
(1853-1954), and Farm Journal
(1877- ). There is also a complete file of Robert B. Thomas's (Old) Farmer's Almanack
(1793- ), with some issues bearing their original owner's notations. A card file of American almanacs before 1821 is kept in the Rare Book Division, along with almanac rarities.
Scholarly periodicals include long files of publications of the Deutsche Landwirtschafts-Gesellschaft, the Académie d'Agriculture de France, the International Institute of Agriculture, the Royal Agricultural Society of England, and many others. Provincial agricultural societies, both domestic and foreign, are also represented by substantial files. Holdings of periodicals and society publications in such specialized agricultural topics as poultry, dairies and dairying, and cattle were once collected on a more comprehensive basis than at present; indeed the poultry holdings were considered outstanding until the early 1940s.
Government publications, the majority of which are serial, include a noteworthy collection of the agricultural reports of the United States and Canada (for which the library is a depository), along with the less comprehensively held reports of other national governments. The library substantially receives all the serial and monographic publications of the agricultural experiment stations and state agricultural departments or boards in this country; only the annual reports of foreign provincial or state agricultural agencies, including those of Canada, are generally received. At present, the Economic and Public Affairs Division is attempting to strengthen its collections of the international statistical publications from all levels of government.