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Yale Library

US Government Information: Executive Branch Information

How to find documents from executive agencies

1. Check the agency's website. Current documents, publications, and data can often be found at the agency's website.

2. Google strategically. Limit your Google search to the agency's website. This gives you the power of the Google search algorithm, limited to the pages within the agency's web presence. You can restrict your search to the agency's entire website (, part of the website (, or a specific type of file on the website (filetype:pdf, filetype:xls).

3. Don't forget the Library! As a Federal Depository Library, Yale has received many documents from federal agencies. Try a keyword search in Orbis, or use the name of the agency in an author search.

4. Consult the Catalog of Government Publications. The Monthly Catalog (now the Catalog of Government Publications) is an index to information published by the federal government. Yale subscribes to the online resource Monthly Catalog of U.S. Government Publications, 1895-1976, which renders the index searchable by keyword, agency, publication date, and more. For post-1976 documents, use the Catalog of U.S. Government Publications.

5. Do you need historical documents? Yale subscribes to the database ProQuest Congressional, which includes two essential components for historical research into the executive branch: Executive Branch Documents, 1789-1932, and the Serial Set.

Executive Branch Documents includes the full text of documents identified in the seminal Checklist of Public Documents, 1789-1909 and the CIS Index to U.S. Executive Branch Documents, 1910-1932. (Until recently, researchers needed to consult these documents on microfiche; for example, Yale has War Department documents, 1910-1932.) To limit your search to the EBD collection, go to the Advanced Search menu in ProQuest Congressional and select "Executive Branch Documents" from the list of document types.

For historical research, especially into the 19th and early 20th centuries, you may also want to search the Serial Set from within ProQuest Congressional. While the Serial Set is now comprised almost entirely of congressional materials, the series previously included some executive branch publications. 

6. Are you interested in the inner workings of an executive agency? The National Archives holds selected records from federal agencies.

Executive Office of the President (EOP)

The Executive Office of the President was established by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1939. The EOP now consists of such entities as the Council of Economic Advisers, the Office of National Drug Control Policy, the Office of Science and Technology Policy, and the Office of Management and Budget.

Executive branch information not included in this guide

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