DCRM(S): Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Serials)


Current status

The print version of DCRM(S) is no longer available.
The text is available online as a free PDF and on LC Cataloger’s Desktop.

PDF formatted for printing double-sided on 8 1/2 x 11 in. paper:
PDF of front cover (color):






History and background

DCRM(S) provides instructions for cataloging printed serials whose rarity, value, or interest make special description necessary or desirable and is part of the Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (DCRM) suite of manuals. Previously, rules for cataloging rare serials were found in Appendix C of Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Books (DCRB), published in 1991 by the Library of Congress. That appendix was a revised version of the guidelines for treatment of rare serials published in the Library of Congress Cataloging Service Bulletin (CSB), no. 26, fall 1984. DCRM(S) is based on Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Materials (Books) (DCRM(B)), on the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules, Second Edition (AACR2), on ISBD(A): International Standard Bibliographic Description for Older Monographic Publications (Antiquarian), Second Revised Edition, 1991, on the CONSER Cataloging Manual (CCM), and on the CONSER Editing Guide (CEG).

DCRM(S) has been a long time coming. Jane Gillis and Juliet McLaren spent many years developing the framework for the description of rare serials based on Appendix C of DCRB and taking the rules on the road in workshops and seminars. In 1998, when the Bibliographic Standards Committee decided to revise DCRB into DCRM(B), the rules for rare serials were put on the back burner. In January 2006, progress on DCRM(B) was far enough along that Committee attention could once again be turned toward serials and a DCRM(S) editorial team was appointed to complete the rules and mold them into a full-fledged DCRM component manual. In November 2008, DCRM(S) was published by the Library of Congress Cataloging Distribution Service.

DCRM(S) editorial team

  • Randal S. Brandt, Principal Cataloger, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley
  • Ann W. Copeland, Special Collections Cataloging Librarian, Penn State University
  • Jane Gillis, Catalog Librarian, Rare Book Team, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Yale University
  • Juliet McLaren, ESTC, University of California, Riverside
  • Stephen Skuce, Rare Books Cataloging Librarian, MIT Libraries

Special thanks to DCRM(B) editors John Attig, Deborah J. Leslie, Joe A. Springer, and Manon Théroux who have brought invaluable experience and expertise to discussions about rare serials.

Thanks also to The Bancroft Library at the University of California, Berkeley, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library at Yale University, and the Folger Shakespeare Library for providing meeting space for DCRM(S) editorial meetings.