Catalog Help

What can I do in the Catalog?

  • Search for books, movies, audiobooks and music owned by the library.
  • Place a hold request on titles you would like to check out.
  • Use My Account to see what you have checked out, renew items, and check on items on hold.

You need your library card number and PIN to place holds and use My Account.

Your PIN is a four digit number that you chose when you applied for your library card. If you had a card prior to June 1998, the last four digits of your phone number was assigned as your PIN. If you do not know your PIN, you will need to go to your local branch library and ask at the Circulation Desk.

I registered for my library card online and I cannot log in with my temporary number.
Do not include any spaces when entering your temporary number. For example, if your temporary number appeared like this: 220710 497803-1, then type it in like this 220710497803-1. The dash (-) is significant, you need to include it.

How do I search the Catalog?
To search, type a word, words or phrase in the appropriate box and press Enter or click on the Go button.

There are two types of Catalog searches: keyword and list.

  • Keyword searches find everything matching all of the words you enter. Use a word search when you're unsure of the exact title or the subject term.
  • List searches let you browse an alphabetical list of titles, authors or subjects. In a list search, words must be entered in the proper order - last name first for authors, titles as written.

How do I do a keyword search?
Enter the word (or words) in the correct search box and press Enter or click the Go button. You can enter words in more than one box at a time.

If you get too many results, try a more specific word like beagle instead of dog, or add words to your search to make it more specific.

If you don't get enough results, try a more general word, like pet instead of dog, or remove words from your search.

You can use an asterisk (*) as wildcard symbol. Example: nurse* will find nurse, nurses, nursery, nursing, etc. You can use a question mark (?) as a truncation symbol representing up to one character. Example: nurse? will find nurse and nurses.

How do I do a list search?
A List search lets you look through an alphabetical list of titles, authors, subjects, series, ISBNs, or Dewey Decimal call numbers. You do not need to enter the full title or name, but you should enter the words in the order they appear.

Search Enter Example
Title First few words of title gone with the
Author Last Name, First Name mitchell margaret
Subject Main subject term Georgia History
Series First few words of series title series of unfort
ISBN/ISSN 10 or 13 digit ISBN 068483068X
Call Number 3 digit Dewey number 973.7458

What are the results of a search?
List searches will display a list of 20 terms (authors, titles or subjects). The term most closely matching your search is third on this list. You can click on a term to see specific titles, or go forwards or backwards in the list.

Search Results display after word searches or if an entry on a browse list contains more than one match. Search Results display the:

  • title
  • author
  • publisher and date published
  • format (sound recording, videorecording, large print) if not a book
  • small picture of the cover if available.

Click on the title or cover art to display Details on a title. Click next to display more titles.

The Details screen has three areas:

  • Details box: on the left links to reviews, summaries, table of contents, and links to search for titles with the same author or on the same subject.
  • Title Information: on top right gives full description of that title including links to browse for other titles with the same author, performer or series.
  • Where to Find It: on the lower right lists:
    • Location - libraries that own copies
    • Collection - what section of the library the title is
    • Call No - where the title is shelved
    • Status - checked in, checked out, lost, etc.
    • Notes

Can you give me some searching tips?
If you find one title that is on the subject you are looking for and want to find more, on the Details for that title, follow the one of the subject links.

Use sorts and limits to manage long lists of Search Results. Sorting by publication date will list the most recent titles first. Limits will select titles in a specific format (book, video), owned by a specific branch, or in a specific language. To sort or limit, select from the drop down box and click the Go button.

To construct complex searches and apply limits before you search, use the Advanced search. To perform earlier searches again, go to the History subtab.

Non-Searching Features

  • Place a Hold Request if the title you want is checked out or isn't at the library branch you normally use, you can place a hold on that item. To request an item, click on Place a Hold, enter your library card number and PIN.
  • My Account lets you see the items you have checked out, when they are due, and lets you renew them. You can also check on holds and any fines you may owe.
  • My List lets you keep a temporary list of titles you are interested in. You can keep a list of books you want to read, a bibliograply for a term paper, or simply title you might want to request. If you don't login the list is lost when you close your browser. If you do login, then the list will be there when you login again for up to a year.  However, you may extend the life of your lists by following these instructions. Note to term paper writers: you can create bibliographies and e-mail them to yourself in the MLA and Chicago formats. The resulting lists are close but not exactly in the proper formats.
  • Popular Titles consists of lists of best sellers, award winners, reading lists and new titles. New titles lists are RSS feeds which are also available here. Kid's only lists are also available under Great Books.
  • You can E-mail results from Search Results, My List or Details screens to yourself or a friend.

Search Bar
The Catalog can be added to the search bar in Internet Explorer 7 or Firefox 2. To add the Catalog to your search bar, on this page click on the down arrow by the search bar then select Add Search Providers > DCPL Catalog in IE, or Add "DCPL Catalog" in Firefox. Once you've added the Catalog to your search bar, words entered there will perform an any word search.

Check it out before you buy. This "bookmarklet" is a small program that will enable you to search the Library Catalog from or Barnes &

DCPL BookmarkletBookmarklet

To use:

  1. Click and drag the above picture of books and drop it on your links/favorites bar.
  2. Search Amazon or B&N to locate a book or audio visual item.
  3. Click on the Bookmarklet on your tool bar.
  4. A new window with the Catalog will open displaying the title you located, or indicating nothing was found.


  • The URL in for the bookstore page must include an ISBN (International Standard Book Number). This is usually the case if you searched for a title, but often not the case for other links (e.g. the Barnes & Noble - People who bought this book also bought:)
  • Try hardback editions of a book before the paperback edition.
  • The Catalog will link in another window/tab. You may have to adjust your pop-up-blocker to allow the new window/tab to open.
  • If you cannot drag the bookmarklet to your Links bar (i.e. Internet Explorer under Windows XP Service Pack 2), do the following:
    • Point at the Bookmarklet link and right click.
    • Select "Add to Favorites..."
    • Answer, Yes to "You are adding a favorite that may not be safe. Do you want to continue?"
    • Select the Links folder and click OK.

Technical Requirements
To access the Catalog your computer needs to:

  • run a fairly recent web browser
  • allow JavaScript

Working Browsers:

  • Internet Explorer 5.5 or later. 6.02 or later recommended.
  • Firefox 1.5 or later.
  • Netscape 7.1 or later
  • Mozilla 1.4 or later
  • Opera 8 or later
  • Safari 1.2.1 or later

JavaScript must be enabled in your browser to do most functions.

To enable JavaScript, follow the menu choices below in your browser:

Internet Explorer:
Tools > Internet Options > Security > Custom Level > Active Scripting. If the Internet Zone is set to High Security, Active Scripting is off by default. This option enables/disables ActiveX as well as Javascript, so you might not want to leave it on. Alternately, add to your list of Trusted Sites.
Tools > Options > Content
Tools > Preferences > Advanced > Content