Frequently Asked Questions for Using Books By Mail Online

I can no longer log in to My Library Account in Minerva. Why?

Books By Mail moved to URSUS on August 17, 2015.  Your library card will no longer work in Minerva.

How do I get to the URSUS catalog?

URSUS is located at

How do I access my patron account in URSUS?

Click on My Library Account. Type your last name and your 14-digit barcode number from your library card. Then click on Submit.

My library account in URSUS does not show the things I had checked out or the holds I had in Minerva. What happened to them?

Since we have moved from Minerva to URSUS, your checked out items will not appear.  For your holds, we had to cancel your Minerva holds and request them in URSUS or MaineCat. If we could not request a particular title, you should have received a cancelled notice by e-mail or postal mail.

How do I request something in URSUS?

Go to the URSUS catalog (located at and do the following:

  1. On the drop-down menu, choose whether you want to search by author, title, or keyword. You may click on Advanced Search (found below the search box) for more search options.
  2. Enter your search terms (author is last name first i.e. King, Stephen) Then click on Submit.
  3. If you find a record for the title you want, click on Request.
  4. Enter your last name, your 14-digit barcode number from your library card, and select Maine State Library from the pull-down list for Pickup Location.
  5. Click on Submit. If the request is successful, the item will be mailed to you. Please ignore messages about picking up items. All your items will be mailed to you.

If I did not find the title in URSUS, what do I do?

Usually if your search did not find the title, you can click on Search MaineCat to expand your search to more libraries.  You can also get to MaineCat by going to

I tried to request something in MaineCat but I got a message saying “Sorry, no copies available for requests.” Why?

You can only request an item in MaineCat if at least one library has a copy available. Otherwise, you will need to check periodically until a copy shows available.

When I request an item, I am asked to select a Pickup Location. Or I received an email notice telling me something is ready to pickup. Do I have to go to the library to pick things up?

No, all items for Books By Mail patrons will be mailed. You can disregard any messages about having to pick up items.