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Simpson | Stafford | Special Collections

Government Resources: Legislative Branch

Federal and state sources for information


  • FDsys (Federal Digital System) formerly known as GPO Access: Provides access to numerous federal documents and databases, including:
  • U. S. Budget
  • Congressional bills
  • Economic Report of the President
  • Federal Register
  • Public Laws
  • United States Code
  • United States Government Manual and many more.
  • Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation : The Library of Congress is making available online the written history of the American Congress in digitized, searchable form. "This first release of the collection offers the records of the first two federal congresses, 1789-1793. It includes the Journal of the House of Representatives (1789-1793) and the Senate (1789-1793), including the Senate Executive Journal (1789-1805); the debates of Congress as published in the Annals of Congress (1789-1838); and the Journal of William Maclay (1789-1791), Senator from Pennsylvania in the first Congress."
  • Congressional Universe : Accesses Congressional publications, provides information about members of Congress and Congressional committees, and locates bills, laws, and regulations.
  • CongressLink (The Dirksen Congressional Center) : Resource for teachers providing information about Congress.  Includes lesson plans, special projects, glossary, historical notes, up-to-date information on the current congress, and much more.
  • Congress.Org : Information includes: current photograph, room, phone and fax numbers, key staff, committee assignments, district office addresses and much more.
  • Legislative Source Book : Developed by the Law Librarians' Society of Washington, D. C. and includes informational documents and links of interest to legislative researchers.
  • The New Home for Legislative Information.  This new beta site from the Libary of Congress offers tools to gain comprehensive knowledge on the laws and legislators of the United States. In 2013, it will replace  Ideal for teachers, students, and the public. 
  • Thomas: Legislative Information on the Internet : Provides through the Library of Congress information on Congress (including floor activities), bills, House and Senate roll call votes, public laws, major legislation, committee information, and historical documents. Also furnishes access to the Congressional Record and material on the legislative process.

Other Resources

  • Congressional Timeline 1.0 (Dirksen Congressional Center):Beginning with the 73rd Congress, this timeline features session dates, partisan composition, the presdiential administration, a list of congressional leaders, and notable legislation passed.
  • GLIN (The Global Legal Information Network): Public database of official texts of laws, regulations, judicial decisions, and other complementary legal sources contributed by governmental agencies and international organizations in their original languages. Each document is accompanied by a summary in English, plus subject terms selected from the multilingual index to GLIN.
  • Justia Provides free primary resources for legal research: case law, codes, regulations, statutes, and legal information - also blogs, alerts, opinion summaries, federal dockets - all searchable.
  • Law Library, Library of Congress
  • Locating the Law: A Handbook for Non-law Librarians (Southern California Association of Law Libraries (SCALL) Public Access to Legal Information (PALI) Committee
  • NHGRI Policy and Legislation Database (National Human Genome Research Institute) : Enables researchers, health professionals and the general public to more easily locate information on laws and policies related to a wide array of genetic issues. This database contains Federal and State laws/statutes; Federal legislative materials; and Federal administrative and executive materials, including regulations, institutional policies, and executive orders. The database currently focuses on the following subject areas: privacy of genetic information/confidentiality; informed consent; insurance and employment discrimination; genetic testing and counseling; and commercialization and patenting.
  • General Legal Research Sites - Free and Commerical 
    Part of LLSDC's Legislative Source Book (Law Librarians' Society of Washington, D.C.)
  • The Law Student Guide to Free Legal Research on the Internet 
    Created by Sarah Glassmeyer of Valparaiso University School of Law. The guide is written in a casual tone and is intended to be used by law students.

Government Documents

Federal Depository Library

Summer Durrant
Collection Services Librarian
Government Documents Coordinator

Phyllis Johnson
Government Documents Assistant