Federal Government Resources
Spokane Public Library is a Federal Depository Library (FDLP). You do not need a library card or computer reservation for access to government websites. All .gov and .mil websites are accessible from any Catalog Computer in all Spokane City Libraries. Look for official copies of federal documents on the Federal Digital System: FDsys , or try a search on USA.gov. For answers to government questions, 8AM – 8PM Monday through Friday (Eastern Time) call 1-800-FED-INFO (1-800-333-4636).
Government Printing Office
Search Engines & Subject Guides
- USA.gov official Gateway to Government Information.
To locate government forms and other government websites, try Search.USA.gov/search/advanced .
- Data.gov offers access to government agency data sets as diverse as climate change statistics and export licensing records, and includes links to International data sites.
- Federal Procurement Data System: Find who has Defense Contracts and other Government Contracts.
- USAspending.gov for all types of government grants, loans, contracts, and other types of spending.
- KIDS.gov searches federal agencies kids' sites along with some of the best kids' sites from other organizations.
- Public Access NTRL: National Technical Information Service (NTIS) provides access to the NTRL searchable online database of approximately three million federal science and technology reports. The search is free, but in order to display a full text document, you would need to register. Registration is free.
- Science.gov: search the surface Web as well as the deep Web, including often hard-to-access scientific databases. This gateway to government science information allows searches across 30 databases and more than1,700 science Websites. Use Advanced Search to choose websites and databases.
- Government Information Online is a free service supported by libraries throughout the United States; they offer an Ask a Librarian service that specializes in answering questions about government information.
Chat live online with a librarian or email a question.
Census and Statistics
- Census Bureau Homepage offers access to official United States Census data, including Easy Stats for quick access to selected statistics, and including Historical Statistics from the Statistical Abstracts, 1878 – the present; and from the Historical Statistics of the United States, Colonial Times to 1970.
- Census QuickFacts: start at this site for easy access to State, County, or Place statistics. Want more? Browse DataSets after you get to your choice.
- USA.gov maintains a pageto help you find Data and Statistics
- Demographics Now- If you are outside of the Libraries, you will need to enter your Spokane Public Library card number to use this subscription database of demographics, consumer and business statistics.istorical and international data.
- See also our Library's Demographics Resources page for more suggestions for sources of state and local statistics.
- United States Historical Census Browser from the University of Virginia provides access to statistics from the 1790 to 1960 Decennial Census for each of the states and counties.
- Department of Veteran Affairs web site for va.gov/vetdata
Genealogy Information from Federal agencies
Grants and Foundations
- Registry of U.S. Government Publication Digitization Projects serves as a locator tool for publicly accessible collections of digitized U.S. Government publications;
- American Memory, the online Historical Collection at the Library of Congress, provides access to Photos & Prints, Documents, Motion Pictures, Maps, and Sound Recordings. See also A Century of Lawmaking, 1774-1875, including selected volumes from the American State Papers, the Congressional Serial Set, the Annals of Congress, the Congressional Globe, and the Congressional Record.
- Core Documents of Our Democracy: basic Federal Government documents that define our democratic society.
- National Archives and Records Administration: many resources including Genealogy, Veterans' Service Records, and how to look for Bankruptcy and Other Court Case Files. You may also search a database of digital copies of documents,photographs, maps, and sound recordings.
- TRAIL, Technical Report Archive & Image Library:a project to digitize, archive, and provide persistent and unrestrictedaccess to federal technical reports issued prior to 1975. Click here to search TRAIL content .
- Archive.org's Ebook and Texts Archive: This site often offers choices, such as: Read Online, PDF, B/WPDF, EPUB (beta), Kindle (beta), Daisy (beta), DjVu, All Files: HTTP.
- You might also try HathiTrust.org or Google Book Search for a possible online full-text scan of historical documents.
Homework, History Day, and Children’s Sites
- Ben's Guide to U.S. Government: learning tools for K-12 students,parents, and teachers.
- KIDS.gov: links to Federal kids' sites along with lists of the best kids' sites and educators' sites, and sites from other organizations, with the lists all grouped by subject.
- Census in Schools: census facts, maps, lesson plans, and other materials for students and teachers.
- Library of Congress pages for National History Day:
Looking for Primary Sources? Sometimes the Library of Congress Catalog has links to digital versions of their holdings of some primary sources.
- The National Archives' gateway for educators and students is the Digital Classroom.
- Space Place: NASA website includes games, projects, and classroom activities for Kids, Parents, and Teachers. NASA for Students is another site for students of all ages.
- ASK A LIBRARIAN at the Library Of Congress : You can ask a reference question or receive assistance in using the American Memory collections, the Learning Page and other Library of Congress online resources.
IRS Tax Forms Guide
- IRS.gov Use this site on any Spokane Public Library Catalog Computer.
- Print IRS forms and publications from any library catalog computer for 10 cents per page or photocopy them for 10 cents per page from the IRS binders. The library has binders of older tax forms.
- IRS tax forms and pubs are online back to 1864! You can print the form; often you can type your information into the form before you print it out.
- You may mail-order many current year tax forms and publications for delivery by U. S. mail. Call 1-800-829-3676 to place your order.
- You may be able to pick-up free copies of selected current year forms by visiting the Taxpayer Assistance Center in the Federal Courthouse at 920 West Riverside.
- IRS Free-File and IRS e-file: Read about these on the IRS.gov site. But if you want to link to e-file partner sites (which are private company sites), while in our library, you need to use your City Library Card to log on to a Full-Service Internet Computer so you can link to those commercial sites.
- IRS Taxpayer Advocate Service
- IRS site for Where's My Refund? You can check your Refund Status online.
- Free tax preparation services for low to moderate income and elderly people provided by the Spokane County Asset Building Coalition spokanecash.org/free-tax-preparation.html in partnership with the IRS, AARP, United Way, and community partners.
- In cooperation with the IRS, AARP Foundation Tax-Aide volunteers are trained to understand individual federal tax issues, especially the provisions of the tax code that affect older people. You can submit a question online at Online Tax Counseling.
Maps, Elevations, Latitudes and Longitudes:
- USGS Geographic Names Information System: this page will help you find Elevations, Latitudes, Longitudes and wonderful maps: Click on “Domestic Names”; then click on "Search GNIS" to get to the search page. Click on your feature name; there will be a list of mapping services on the right side of the page. I like to use USGS The National Map.
- NationalMap.gov links to NationalAtlas.gov Map Maker provided by the Department of the Interior, and it also links to the USGS mapping pages, like to the US Topo , the Historical Topo Map Collection, and to the National Map Viewer.
- Spokane County GIS : use for printable maps of tax areas, zoning maps, and other types of information.
- Spokane CityMap provides a CityMap viewer and a CrimeMap viewer.
- Washington State Geospatial Data Archive for a large selection of maps.
- Latitude/Longitude Conversions, if you need to convert the Latitude/Longitude from decimal degrees to degrees, minutes, seconds.
- Find the Washington State Department of Transportation Railroad map under Freight - Maps
Science and Environment
- Astronomical Applications Department of the U.S. Naval Observatory Sunrise/Sunset: Click on "Data Services" for Sun and Moon rise and set times, Moon phases, eclipses, seasons, positions of solar system objects, and other data.
- NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) produces forecasts for multiple space weather phenomenon types and the resulting impacts to Earth and human activities. (the NOAA site may look better on Firefox or Chrome) Compare the NOAA auroral predictions to these Aurora Forecast maps from the University of Alaska Geophysical Institute.
- NASA's ISS Tracker will help you find the local flyby times to view the International Space Station.
- Nasa's Space Place: games and projects and classroom activities for Kids, Parents, and Teachers. NASA for Students is another site for students of all ages.
- Household Products Database: Health & Safety Information from the National Institutes of Health.
- Right-to-Know Network provides free access to environmental databases, text files,and conferences on the environment, including the Toxic Release Inventory. The Toxic Release Inventory (TRI) is a database of information about releases and transfers of toxic chemicals from manufacturing facilities. You can search it by zip code or city.
- Science In Your Backyard: Washington: this USGS website includes recreation information, real-time river information, volcanic activity, earthquake information, and more.
- ToxTown: toxic chemicals and environmental health risks;information from the National Library of Medicine.
- National Weather Service: http://www.weather.gov/
Unclaimed Property and Free Credits Reports
Government May Owe You Money : see this list of sites from www.USA.gov, the official portal to government resources.
Unclaimed Money and Assets: a page of links from the U. S. Department of the Treasury. IMPORTANT: There is no government-wide, centralized information service or database on how unclaimed government assets may be obtained. Each individual federal agency maintains its own records.
ClaimYourCash.org is a public service of the Washington State Department of Revenue.
MissingMoney.org: a States Sponsored National Database from NAUPA (the National Association of Unclaimed Property Administrators) provides this on-line searchable database which contains unclaimed property records from participating states. This information is provided as a FREE service to the public and is managed for NAUPA by the ACS Unclaimed Property Clearinghouse.
Annual Credit Reports - the Federal Trade Commission provides information about and a link to annualcreditreport.com, the only authorized online source to get a free credit report under Federal law.
Other Documents Libraries