The Federal Register Turns 70Breaking News
The celebration marks the evolution of a publication that began as a two-column, 16-page gazette of the burgeoning federal bureaucracy created by the New Deal. It has progressed from a diary of completed rulemakings -- usually about five items a day at first -- to an Internet-based reference that allowed some 208 million documents to be downloaded in 2004.
On March 14, 1936, when the first issue came off the presses, the Federal Register contained items about regulating the handling of milk in the St. Louis area, trade practice rules the Federal Trade Commission issued for button manufacturers, and an excise tax on employers under the Social Security Act.
The readers were few. The cost for a subscription was $10 annually. And some officials worried there would not be enough material to publish daily. Indeed, it took only 1,500 pages to fill the first six months of the publication, compared with the 75,675 pages printed in 2004.
Subscriptions to the print version now cost $749. Circulation plummeted to 2,500 from 20,000 after the register became available for free online in 1994.
Though he had doubts about establishing the register, President Franklin D. Roosevelt wrote the lead-off rule -- really an executive order -- to enlarge the Cape Romain Migratory Bird Refuge in South Carolina. Roosevelt appointed the first director, retired Army Maj. Bernard R. Kennedy, at a salary "not to exceed" $5,000 a year.
comments powered by Disqus
- Snopes debunks slavery Internet meme
- Revamped Chinese History Journal Welcomes Hard-Line Writers
- Poll: 3 Out of 5 Texan Trump Supporters Want Secession if Hillary Clinton Is Elected
- The Psychiatric Question: Is It Fair to Analyze Donald Trump From Afar?
- Minorities still feel Eugene, Oregon’s historical link to the Ku Klux Klan
- Ernst Nolte, Historian Whose Views on Hitler Caused an Uproar, Dies at 93
- Japan should give formal apology for wartime aggression, says historian
- Historian Benjamin Madley says what whites did to Indians in the 19th century in California was genocide.
- Kevin Baker says America needs to bring back political machines
- Covell Meyskens uses his blog to show what life was like under Mao. (Interview)