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This paper enumerates federal government documentation of the period 1970-1989 pertaining to organic agriculture in the United States, identified in the Congressional Information Service’s Cumulative Indices and in bibliographies published by the United States National Agricultural Library. These Congressional hearings, federal legislation, and selected U. S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)-sponsored documents provide an historical context for the 1990 legislation that created the National Organic Program (NOP) and the National Organic Standards Board (NOSB). The paper provides chronological tabulations of the historical documents, and discusses the communication difficulties and relationships revealed therein between the Congress, the USDA, and organic producers of the time.