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Tennessee NACO Funnel

At a meeting of the Technical Services Round Table of the Tennessee Library Association in Knoxville, Tennessee, March 2004, a group of catalog librarians agreed to work together to participate in the Library of Congress' Program for Cooperative Cataloging to create name authority records. Two catalog librarians in the state had explored independently the possibility of forming a funnel, and the representatives from the gathered group decided to seek membership in the Library of Congress' NACO program. Now known at the Tennessee NACO Funnel, the charter members have been trained in using standards in the MARC21 Format for Authority Data to create name authority records that will become a part of the national authority file.

When creating original cataloging records for Tennessee state documents one finds that LC's Authority File (LCAF) has too few state agency names, conference names, place names, and names of people who create state documents or who are active in the public life of the state. While NACO trained employees are not limited to creating records that relate to a specific geographic area, nevertheless, producing authority records for local, state, and regional names for Tennessee is where the need is greatest, and this will be a focus for Tennessee NACO Funnel members.

Charter participating institutions whose library staff has received training are:

  • East Tennessee State University, Johnson City
  • Memphis Public Library and Information Center, Memphis
  • Middle Tennessee State University, Murfreesboro
  • Southwest Tennessee Community College, Memphis
  • Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville
  • Tennessee State University, Nashville
  • Tennessee Technological University, Cookville
  • University of Memphis
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville

Vanderbilt University Libraries in Nashville, Tennessee, is a full NACO member. Their Authorities Coordinator, Mary Charles Lasater, is a NACO program trainer and has provided all the name authority record creation instruction for members of the new Tennessee NACO Funnel. The funnel participants are very grateful to the administrators of the Vanderbilt University Libraries for allowing her the time to provide the valuable training.

During the Tennessee Library Association 2005 Conference in Nashville in March at a meeting of the Technical Services Round Table other librarians expressed an interest in joining, being trained, and becoming active contributors. Training sessions will be planned when there are a sufficient number of prospective members in an area of the state. It is the hope of the organizers that the number of participants will increase, the number of Tennessee authority records available in the national file will expand substantially, and that access to state documents for the citizens of Tennessee will be greatly improved.

The Cataloging Department of the University of Memphis will serve as the Funnel Coordinator for the program. Library employees who are engaged in cataloging in Tennessee who wish to express their interest in joining the program may contact Mark Danley.

Name Authority Reference Tools

Online resources: for links to general, state, or regional web sites that may be useful to members of the Tennessee NACO funnel, click on

Tennessee Blue Book, Online 2013-14 Edition
Useful for checking on agency name changes.

Tennessee Electronic Library

Tennessee Encyclopedia of History and Culture

Tennessee. Secretary of State. Public Acts and Resolutions of the State of Tennessee
Available online from the 100th General Assembly (1997/98) to the present. Useful for checking on agency name changes.

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Last Updated: 2/26/15