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Subject Analysis :
Canadian History Call Numbers

[*   F1000-F1150, F5000s, FC: Background  |  *   FC Double Cutters  |  *   F1000-F1150, F5000s, FC: Guidelines  |  *   Comparison Chart  |  *   Non-F Classes for Canadian History  |  *   Table of Contents (Subject Analysis)  |  *   Table of Contents (Top)]

F1000-F1150, F5000s, FC: Background

The Library of Congress classification system classes Canadian history in F1001-F1150 (F1150 is approximate), between the states of the U.S. and Mexico. This is based on a decision made a long time ago (around 1900), which no doubt seemed logical then, but which like many other such decisions, failed to allow for later development.

A number of Canadian libraries found the LC scheme inadequate for their collections. Starting in the 1940s at the University of British Columbia, a schedule was developed using the numbers F5000-F5999, which follow LC's numbers for South America. The edition of this schedule that is still on hand is dated 1967. By that date, or sometime earlier, F5000-F5999 was adopted for use at Queen's. (F5012 is still used for the Canadian pamphlets in the Lorne Pierce Collection.)

For various reasons the F5000-F5999 range too was found inadequate. In the 1970s a whole new schedule was developed in class FC. This was adopted at Queen's around 1976 to replace the F5000s, and has been used since. (Problems can also arise with certain FC numbers, however. See the section on FC Double Cutters.)

Unfortunately we have not had the resources to reclassify all the existing collections in F1000-F1150 and F5000s, so the Canadian history collections continue to be divided into different locations on the shelves, with all of Latin America in between F1200 and F5000. It would certainly be desirable to reclass at least the titles with copies in open stacks, but this would be a very large project for both Cataloguing and public service staff.

Most Canadian libraries now use FC, but LC has only promised not to use it for anything else. Copy for new titles may have F1000-F1150 or FC call numbers depending on the source (and occasional F5000s may also turn up). When this happens, the F1000-F1150 or F5000s number should be replaced by an FC number.

A special case: LC classes all works on the War of 1812 in E351-E364.9. At Queen's, works on Canadian aspects of the war are classed in FC442-FC449.

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FC Double Cutters

Like all LC history classes, FC contains some sections that require double cutters. Basic numbers such as FC106 (ethnic groups), FC636 (Chrétien administration biography), or FC3099 (Ontario cities other than Ottawa, Toronto, and Hamilton), are followed by a first cutter that stands for one of a list (of ethnic groups, people, cities, and so on). The second cutter then stands for the author or title of the particular book. Both cutters are needed in such cases.

The quickest way to determine if your number requires double cutters is to check the shelflist. With some exceptions (most often in law and literature classes), double and single cutters are not usually mixed together. However, if yours is the first book in the class number, you may need to consult an original cataloguer or the printed FC schedule.

In double-cuttered numbers, it is important to follow a consistent list of first cutters. Sometimes longer or shorter lists are given in the printed schedule, but in any case original cataloguers can assign new first cutters as required.

For place names we have established our own lists at Queen's, different from those found in copy from the National Library. These lists are kept in binders at the desk of an original cataloguer, and updated as necessary.

Since FC is not an LC class, it is not in ClassWeb. Occasional updates to the print schedules are available on the Web from the National Library.

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F1000-F1150, F5000s, FC: Guidelines

When added copies and volumes are catalogued for titles now classed in F1000-F1150, all existing copies and volumes should be reclassed into FC.

When added copies and volumes are catalogued for titles now classed in F5000-F5999, they are normally given the same number as the existing copies and volumes, and no reclassing is done. (The F5000 numbers include many large sets and serials.) Reclassing into FC may be done in special cases, for instance if a new edition is received.

All new titles with call numbers on copy in the F1000-F1150 range or in the F5000s should be routed to an original cataloguer to have an FC number assigned.

If you find in the shelflist that the first cutter in FC copy matches what has already been used, with no apparent conflict, follow the copy. If there is no matching first cutter or there is a conflict, pass the book to an original cataloguer to assign a new number or resolve the conflict.

New titles on Canadian aspects of the War of 1812 with E351-E364.9 call numbers in copy should be sent to an original cataloguer for appropriate treatment of call number and subject headings.

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Comparison Chart

The chart includes some examples of how the three classification schemes are used for Canadian history. Note that one number in F1000-F1150 often equates to a range of numbers in the other schemes.

Selected Topics for Comparison F1000-F1150 F5000-F5999 FC
Canada as a whole F1000-F1035 F5000-F5052 FC1-FC629
-Biography F1006 F5009 FC25-FC27
-Description and travel F1012-F1017 F5017-F5021 FC70-FC76
-Elements in the population F1035 F5028-F5033 FC104-FC141
-History: general F1008 F5053-F5055 FC161-FC165
--New France F1030 F5057-F5065 FC305-FC389
--1840-1867 included in F1032 F5076-F5077.3 FC420-FC480
--1945-present F1034.2-F1034.3 F5090-F5091 FC600-FC639+
Newfoundland & Labrador F1121-F1140 F5350-F5399 FC2151-FC2200
Nova Scotia F1036-F1040 F5200-F5249 FC2301-FC2350
Québec F1051-F1055 F5400-F5449 FC2901-FC2950
Ontario F1056-F1059.7 F5450-F5499 FC3051-FC3100
Kingston (Ont.) F1059.5.K5 F5499.K5 F3099.K5
British Columbia F1086-F1090 F5750-F5799 FC3801-3850
Nunavut F1141-1145.2 (none assigned) FC4301-FC4350

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Non-F Classes for Canadian History

Local history vs. Genealogy: Some works created for genealogists are also useful for local history. Cemetery records have a place in the FC tables for specific places, but could also be classed in CS80-CS90; at Queen's we prefer to class them in FC with other works on the place. Registers of births and marriages should normally be kept in CS, however.

Local history vs. Church history: At Queen's, works dealing with the history of a particular church or parish are usually classed in FC if the emphasis is on the history of the community, possibly including family histories related to the community. If the emphasis is on the church as a place of worship, or if it is in a large city, it is better in BX with the denomination. If the emphasis is on the church as a building, the work may be better classed in NA.

Early and Aboriginal: Works on the pre-Columbian period and on the "Indians", Inuit, or "First Nations" peoples to the present are classed in E51-99 (Indians of Canada (general) in E78.C2; Inuit as Eskimos in E99.E7). Works on European discovery and exploration of the Americas are classed in E101-143.

Arctic regions: Works on the Arctic in general are classed in G575-G890.

Other LC classes are appropriate for some specific aspects of Canadian history. Examples:

HC111-HC120 Economic history
HN101-HN110 Social history
JL1-JL500 History of political institutions
KE4125-KE4775 Constitutional history

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Section 3, Canclass
Created April 5, 2004 by D. Rutherford

Page maintained by Elizabeth A. Read, readel@queensu.ca. Created: 04/05/2004 Updated 13-Apr-2004 02:37 PM