Data Archive Introduction | Background and Introduction to the Data | Data | Documentation | Publications about public libraries | Reports


There is an extensive collection of documentation of these public library data as can be seen. I have toyed with the idea of reorganizing these links by year to include the data with the documentation but not this time.

Public Libraries Survey – Documentation
Type of file Year File type File name File size Notes
Documentation FY 2018 PDF 2018_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 3 MB Data File Documentation and User’s Guide
July 2020
Documentation FY 2017 PDF fy2017_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 2 MB Data File Documentation and User’s Guide
May 2019
Documentation FY 2016 PDF fy2016_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 7 MB Data File Documentation and User’s Guide
April 2018
Data Element Definitions FY 2016 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 1.4 MB 19 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2015 PDF fy2015_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 2.0 MB Data File Documentation
September 2017
See pp. 15-17 for a discussion of Geocoding these data.
Data Element Definitions FY 2015 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 1.5 MB 19 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2014 PDF fy2014_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 2.3 MB
Data Element Definitions FY 2014 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 320 KB 23 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2013 PDF fy2013_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 2.2 MB
Documentation FY 2013 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 87 KB 25 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2012 PDF fy2012_pls_data_file_documentation.pdf 2.0 MB
Documentation FY 2012 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 786KB 22 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2011 PDF pls2011doc.pdf 2.0 MB
Documentation FY 2011 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 124KB 22 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
User note FY 2011 PDF USER NOTE: PUBLIC LIBRARIES SURVEY REPORT For Fiscal Year 2008 207KB One page.
Documentation FY 2010 PDF pls2010doc.pdf 3.9 MB
Documentation FY 2010 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 202KB 23 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2009 PDF pls2009doc.pdf 3.9 MB
Documentation FY 2009 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 126KB 22 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2008 PDF pls2008doc.pdf 658 KB
Documentation FY 2008 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 168KB 21 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2007 PDF pls2007doc.pdf 653 KB
Documentation FY 2007 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 152KB 21 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
User note FY 2007 PDF USER NOTE: PUBLIC LIBRARIES SURVEY REPORT For Fiscal Year 2008 8KB One page.
Documentation FY 2006 PDF pls2006doc.pdf 1,616 KB
Documentation FY 2006 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 171KB 21 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2005 PDF pls2005doc.pdf 353KB
Documentation FY 2005 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 167KB 21 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2004 PDF pls2004doc.pdf 526 KB
Documentation FY 2004 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 72KB 26 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2003 PDF pls2003doc.pdf 661 KB
Documentation FY 2003 PDF [Data Element Definitions] 72KB 22 pages. Detailed definitions for variables in the three series.
Documentation FY 2002 PDF pls2002bdoc.pdf 341 KB Data File, Public Use: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 2002 (Revised)
NCES 2004-327
Documentation FY 2001 PDF pls2001bdoc.pdf 1,036 KB Data File, Public Use: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 2001 (Revised)
NCES 2003-398
Documentation FY 2000 PDF pls2000doc.pdf 1,278 KB Public-Use Data File: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 2000
NCES 2002-341
Documentation FY 1999 PDF pls1999doc.pdf 1,278 KB ublic-Use Data File: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1999
NCES 2002-376
Documentation FY 1998 PDF pls1998doc.pdf 434 KB Public-Use Data File: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1998
NCES 2002-386
Documentation FY 1997 PDF pls1997doc.pdf 222 KB Public-Use Data File: Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1997
NCES 2003-388
Documentation FY 1996 PDF pls1996doc.pdf 193 KB Data File (Public-Use): Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1996
NCES 2003-391
Documentation FY 1995 PDF pls1995doc.pdf 193 KB Data File (Public-Use): Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1995
NCES 2003-302
Documentation FY 1994 PDF pls1994doc.pdf 162 KB Data File (Public-Use): Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1994
NCES 2003-304
Documentation FY 1993 PDF pls1993doc.pdf 165 KB Data File (Public-Use): Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1993
NCES 2003-306
Documentation FY 1992 ASCII pls1992doc.pdf 152 KB Data File (Public-Use): Public Libraries Survey, Fiscal Year 1992
NCES 2003-308
Documentation FY 1991 ASCII pls1991doc.txt 105 KB Public Library Data 1991
NCES 2003-308
The documentation includes how to read the data from a 5 1/4″ diskette.
Documentation FY 1990 ASCII pls1990doc.txt 77 KB “Data Base Documentation
Part I – Survey Summary
Public libraries data, 1990”
The documentation includes how to read the data from a 5 1/4″ diskette.
Documentation FY 1989 ASCII pls1989doc.txt
Also published as cb2212.pdf
33 KB Public Libraries Survey, 1989: [United States]
ICPSR 9596, September 1991.
ICPSR 2212, March 2002.
Each says “First ICPSR edition.”
According to the ICPSR citation of the original, it was an NCES Document from 1991.
Documentation FY 1988 PDFI pls1988doc.pdf 402 KB Public Libraries Data, 1988 [United States]
ICPSR 2211, March 2002
According to the ICPSR citation of the original, it was an NCES Document from 1988.
Documentation FY 1987 ASCII pls1987doc.pdf 513 KB Public Libraries Data, 1987 [United States]
ICPSR 2210, March 2002
LIBGIS Documentation
Documentation LIBGIS, 1981 PDF cb2279.pdf 1,306 KB ….Public Library Universe, 1981
ICPSR 2279, March 2002
According to ICPSR’s citation of the NCES publication, the original was published in 1981
Documentation LIBGIS III, FY 1977-1978 PDF cb2209.pdf
SAS program to read the data—sa2209.txt
SPSS program to read the data—sp2209.txt
1,306 KB ….Public Libraries, Fiscal Year 1977-1978
ICPSR 2209, May 2002
According to ICPSR’s citation of the NCES publication, the original was published in 1978.
Documentation LIBGIS III, Public Library Universe, 1977 PDF cb2207.pdf
SAS program to read the data—sa2207.txt
SPSS program to read the data—sp2207.txt
442 KB ….Public Library Universe, 1977
ICPSR 2207, March 2002
Documentation LIBGIS I, FY 1974 PDF cb2208.pdf
SAS program to read the data—sa2208.txt
SPSS program to read the data—sp2208.txt
1,600 KB ….Public Libraries, Fiscal Year 1974
ICPSR 2208, March 2002
Documentation LIBGIS I, Public Library Universe 1973 PDF cb2206.pdf
SAS program to read the data—sa2206.txt
SPSS program to read the data—sp2206.txt
1,600 KB ….Public Library Universe, 1973
ICPSR 2206, March 2002