Skip to main content

Eighteenth Century Collections Online MARC Records FAQ

What is a MARC record?

MARC stands for 'Machine-readable catalog' record. 'Machine-readable' means that a computer can be used to store, search and display these catalog records. MARC records are in a standard format so that computer software will know how to interpret the catalog information for each record. Please refer to for a full description and additional information on MARC record standards.

What software is available to view the MARC records after they are purchased?

The most common method for loading, manipulating, searching and displaying MARC records is through an Online Public Access Catalog (OPAC). An OPAC is a computerized system containing a bibliography of the collections held by the institution. A list of OPAC software and other tools to manipulate MARC records can be found at

What is the origin of Gale's MARC records for Eighteenth Century Collections Online?

Gale has sourced these MARC records from the English Short Title Catalogue, 1473-1800 with the permission of the British Library through the offices of ESTC North America.. These records represent the titles from The English Short-Title Catalogue (EngSTC) that were digitized by Gale for the Eighteenth Century Collections Online product. Please refer to for additional information about the ESTC North America and its ongoing projects.

What cataloging standard is being used in the creation of the MARC records?

The MARC records were created using the Anglo-American Cataloging Rules Version 2/Descriptive Cataloging of Rare Books (AACR2/DCRB) and the Rare Serials Rules/Cooperative Online Serials program (DCRB/CONSER) standard. Some MARC records are unique due to the British Library/English Short Title Catalog (BL/ESTC) cataloging standards dating back over 25 years ago.

Who is the distributor of the MARC records?

Gale uses Backstage Library Works (BSLW), formerly MARCLink, to distribute the Eighteenth Century Collections Online MARC records to customers. BSLW will contact each customer directly once an order for the MARC records are placed with Gale. There is no additional charge to the customer for receiving the records from BSLW however they do offer customization services for customers wishing to make any changes to the records at an additional cost. The cost is based on the type of customization required and can be worked out with BSLW prior to delivery. Additional information on BSLW services can be found at

Do the current records include Hyperlink URLs back to the Eighteenth Century Collections Online database?

Gale populates the 856 field in all the MARC records with a link to electronic version of the book in Eighteenth Century Collections Online.

How can I get a sample of the records before they are purchased?

Sample MARC records are available at This can be accessed via any web browser so there is no special software needed to download the sample. Note: Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, and Mozilla Firefox dropped FTP support.

What support is being provided for the MARC records?

There are two support paths for our customers based on the nature of the issue. All support questions will be addressed within 24 hours of receipt.

Backstage Library Works (BSLW) can assist customers with any problem related to the delivery and loading of the MARC records. To contact them with related issues please use one of the following methods:

Gale Technical Support can assist customers with all other questions including any problems with the 856 hyperlinks. To contact our support department please use one of the following methods:

Does Gale plan on adding Library of Congress (LOC) subject headings to all of the MARC records?

There is no immediate plan to update the Marc records with LOC subject headings. Gale is working with a user group committee to determine if there is a way to add these to the records via a collaboration with the ECCO customer base.

Who will update and maintain the records once they are purchased?

Gale or their subcontractors are not responsible for maintenance or updates to the Eighteenth Century Collections Online MARC records. It is the sole responsibility of the purchaser to perform all routine maintenance and updates.

© 2024 Gale, part of Cengage Group