I have recently accepted the librarian position in a small church library. I am in the process of getting the call numbers on the spines of the books. I am a retired teacher with no official library training. I have many questions and this site has answered many and for that I am grateful. I have found that we may have just one book in a series. An example would be book 3 from The Yellow Rose Trilogy by Wick. As suggested for other series, I have placed the series name above the author's name on the label on the book spine. Should I go ahead and place the series name on the label and place a #3 above the F on the spine?

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I would add the 3 somewhere on the spine label, even though you just have the one volume from the series.   I have found that with that notation someone may donate the others in the series.


What we do with our series is to color code them using different color stickers. Lori Wick has quite a few series so for the Yellow Rose Trilogy we might use a green dot, with numbers 1, 2, 3, on each book. Another series might be bright orange, purple, or red depending on the colors you are able to get.

We also use white stickers with different colored markers.

Our readers love this system.

Thank you Jenn and Janet. I am learning more each day but it has been more challenging than I thought it would be. I have checked out The Classification System for Church Libraries this week. It has been helpful as well.

Cathy, look on LifeWay.com for the resource:  Church Library Ministry Information Service.  It is the   church librarian's guide for administration, collection development, classification & cataloging, and promotion.  I think you will find it very helpful in your new adventure as a church librarian! 

I would also encourage you to look at the right-hand column on this page to see if there are any training events close to you.  Experienced librarians lead the sessions at these events and you will not only receive the benefits of their experience,  but meet others who share your joy in the ministry as well as frustrations in learning new things!

Hi, Cathy,

We catalog series as follows:  813 (for fiction), first three letters of the author's last name, first three letters of the series title and the number in the series.  Therefore, your example would be



Yel 03

You could use F instead of 813. Hope this helps. 




We have quite a few series and since we are still using cards and pockets, we write the title of the book at the top of the pocket with its series #, then, leave a space and then write the other titles (beginning with #1, if we have it) below it, so that our staff and borrowers know which copies in the series we have. If one becomes lost, we make a notation on the pocket as well as the catalog, unless we are able to reorder it. This is really helpful to our patrons and staff, and if several are missing, we can check to see if they have been checked out (we have our nonfiction cataloged but not our fiction). Of course, if you aren't using pockets inside the front cover, you could just write the info or type it and paste it in.

We have a very small space for our library, so we generally don't keep any series we don't have all or most of the copies of. We keep all the #1s together on a roll-out display, and all the #2s through the ends in drawers below our regular shelving. We mark each series book with an "S" on the top of the book block above the spine, so when our shelvers see the "S" they know it goes in a special area. We put a sign at the top of the display letting patrons know we have the rest of the series; they just need to request them. This allows us to keep our regular shelves for stand-alone titles, and our patrons like having the series starter books on the same display, so they know they're a series.


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