Resources for Doing Legal History

Our sister organizations in the United Kingdom are the Selden Society for England and the Stair Society for Scotland.

Conferences devoted to British Legal History are held biennially.

You may also want to read the Organization of American Historians report: Historians and Access to the Files of Lawyers prepared by the Ad Hoc Committee on Access to Lawyers’ Files. It was prepared some time ago, but still appears to be of relevance today.

Archive of websites important for legal and constitutional historians.

The Supreme Court
In 1846, Dred Scott and his wife Harriet filed suit for their freedom in the St. Louis Circuit Court.  This suit began an eleven-year legal fight that ended in the U.S. Supreme Court, which issued a landmark decision declaring that Scott remain a slave. This decision contributed to rising tensions between the free and slave states just before the American Civil War.  The records displayed in this exhibit document the Scotts’ early struggle to gain their freedom through litigation and are the only extant records of this significant case as it was heard in the St.Louis Circuit Court.
FindLaw’s searchable database of the Supreme Court decisions since 1893 (U.S. Supreme Court Decisions: US Reports 150-, 1893-). Browsable by year and US Reports volume number and searchable by citation, case title and full text. This is a free service that will remain free.
The OYEZ Project contains many hundreds of hours of audio materials delivered through a free player available  from Progressive Networks. Simply download and install  the Real Player for your operating system.  Of course, you will need a sound capable computer and speakers. The Project also contains dozens of panoramic images of the Supreme Court Building. To view these images in the Tour section, you will need to download and install QuickTime (for Windows or for MacOS). QuickTime is available from Apple Computer.
The U.S. Air Force has agreed to release a historic file of Supreme Court decisions from its FLITE (“Federal Legal Information Through Electronics”) system. The file consists of over 7,000 Supreme Court opinions dating from 1937 through 1975, from volumes 300 through 422 of U.S. Reports.
The LII collection of historic decisions of the US Supreme Court contains over 600 of the court’s most important decisions through the whole period of its existence. The decisions can be accessed by party name, by topic, and by opinion author.
Supreme Court Classic Cases
Marbury vs. Madison
Sweatt v. Painter documents.
On October 26, 1992, Congress passed Public Law 102-525, establishing Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site to commemorate the landmark Supreme Court decision aimed at ending segregation in public schools.  On May 17, 1954, the Supreme Court unanimously declared that “separate educational facilities are inherently “unequal” and, as such, violate the 14th Amendment to the United States Constitution, which  guarantees all citizens “equal protection of the laws.”  The site is located at Monroe Elementary School in Topeka, Kansas. Monroe was the segregated school attended by the lead plaintiff’s daughter, Linda Brown, when Brown v. Board of Education of Topeka was initially filed in 1951.
The Supreme Court Historical Society.

Constitutions Finder
If your institution subscribes to HeinOnline, its World Constitutions Illustrated library is a well-regarded site that gives texts and translations and reference to scholarship on most of the world’s constitutions. The reference above is publicly available and gives links to the texts, frequently with translations, to the constitutions of most of the world’s nations.

Municipal ordinances and codes
In an effort to make municipal codes throughout the nation more accessible to the public, Seattle Public Library staff have prepared this list of  links to city and county codes available for unrestricted searching on the World Wide Web.

WESSWEB has two goals:
* to provide western Europe specialists with information for their work
* to provide WESS members with information about the Section.
WESSWEB does not intend to replicate the excellent guides prepared in Europe, but to supplement them and make links among them from an international perspective.
Fire for the Ploughman: A Gallery of Characters and Places.
Medieval Multimedia: Digitalizing the Middle Ages
The Medieval Feminist Index covers journal articles, book  reviews, and essays in books about women, sexuality, and gender during the Middle Ages. Because of the explosion of  research in Women’s Studies during the past two decades, scholars and students interested in women during the Middle  Ages find an ever-growing flood of   publications. Identifying relevant works in this mass of material is further complicated by  the interdisciplinary nature   of much of the scholarship. In order to help researchers find current articles and essays quickly and easily, librarians and scholars began compiling the Medieval Feminist Index (MFI) in July 1996. Books written by a single  author are not indexed in MFI; for these, check library catalogs that have strong collections in medieval studies.
Medieval resources.
Latin Word List. This upgrade of the Latin Word List contains some eight thousand entries, although a significant number are duplicates to allow the presentation of additional possible translations and some few are idiosyncratic personal reminders. Please note that this is only a word list offering some possible translations and is no substitute for working closely with a good dictionary. It can nevertheless be quite helpful, particularly if you download it to your own machine, where you can add to it and where your word processor’s thesaurus can greatly increase the number of possible English translations.
The Internet Medieval Sourcebook is organized as three main index  pages, with a number of supplementary documents. Each individual section is still large – an organizational goal here is to avoid incessant  “clicking” to get between pages and to information.
The Online Medieval and Classical Library (OMACL) is a collection of some of the most important literary works of Classical and Medieval civilization.
Iter, meaning ‘a journey’ or ‘a path’ in Latin, is a non-profit research project with partners in Toronto, Canada (the headquarters), New York City, and Tempe, Arizona. The goal of Iter is to increase access to all published materials pertaining to the Middle Ages and Renaissance  (400-1700), through the creation of online bibliographic databases.
Guide to Medieval Terms, which includes legal terms:
This is the Ancient Legal History Sourcebook.
This is the Medieval Legal History Sourcebook.

Our goal is to provide a searchable structure for the scholarly resources of American and British history available on the Internet.  We are still working towards turning this site into a searchable database sometime later this year.
The Labyrinth provides free, organized access to electronic resources in medieval studies through a World Wide Web server at Georgetown University. The Labyrinth’s easy-to-use menus and links provide connections to databases, services, texts, and images on other servers around the world. Each user will be able to find an Ariadne’s thread through the maze of information on the Web.
Romlinger Legal Services – internet legal research tool.
A selective guide to legal history resources on the World Wide Web, with special emphasis on archives and rare book collections that are relevant to legal history.
C. Greek’s Criminal Justice Links
The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Legal History Links Page
Civil Rights Oral History Bibliography
Florida  Lawyer
Search Online Law Reviews
Law Lists Legal Discussion Lists on specialized topics
Slave Law
The page that was formerly located here was long out of date. Instead of a comprehensive listing of law-related web sites, it has now been replaced with a set of jumping-off points for legal research on the Web. As this is primarily a service for University of Bristol students and staff, it is biased towards UK-based (and specifically English) sites.

This site provides information on Roman law sources and literature, the teaching of Roman law, and the persons who engage in the study of Roman law. Anyone who wishes to submit  material to this site should inquire at  the address below.  Contributors may retain the copyright to their material.
The Avalon Project will mount digital documents relevant to the fields of Law, History, Economics, Politics, Diplomacy and Government. We do not intend to mount only static text but rather to add value to the text by linking to supporting documents expressly referred to in the body of the text.  The Avalon Project will no doubt contain controversial documents. Their inclusion does not indicate endorsement of their contents nor sympathy with the ideology, doctrines, or means employed by their authors. They are included for balance and because in some cases they are by our definition a supporting document.
The History Guide, located at the Lower Saxony State and University Library, Göttingen (Germany), is an internet-based subject gateway to  scholarly relevant information in history (main area Anglo-American History). Resources are described and evaluated with a set of  metadata. New resources are continuously added to the database, already cataloged ones regularly double-checked and updated.

English History
English legal history materials.
British legal history: selected links on the web.
The Selden Society, founded in 1887 to encourage the study and advance the knowledge of the history of English law.
The Ames Foundation, founded in 1910 by contributions of the friends of  James Barr Ames for the purpose of continuing the advance of legal knowledge and aiding the improvement of the law.
The TEAMS Middle English Texts are published for TEAMS (The Consortium for the Teaching of the Middle Ages) in association with the University of Rochester by Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, Kalamazoo, Michigan.  The goal of the TEAMS Middle English text series is to make available to teachers and  students texts which occupy an important place in the literary and cultural canon but which have not been readily available in student editions. The National Endowment for the Humanities has supported the creation of this website through a grant to sustain the Middle English Texts Series.

Historical Journals
American Historical Review.
Since its founding in 1949, American Quarterly has established itself as an outstanding guide to American studies.  The journal promotes a broad humanistic understanding of American culture and encourages cross-disciplinary work.  American Quarterly is the official publication of the American Studies Association.
Early America Review is a journal of fact and opinion on the people issues and events of 18th-century America.
Columbia Law Review.
Cornell Law Review.
Duke Law Journal
Emory Law Journal
Essays in History, the annual journal sponsored by the Corcoran Department of History at the University of Virginia, is now in its fifth decade.
    Harvard Law Review.
    Home to about a dozen historical magazines on American, world, cultural, and military history.
Studies in the Philosophy of History
The Organization of American Historians publishes the Journal of American History.
a leading scholarly publication in the field of American history.
    Journal of British Studies.
    The Journal of Economic History is devoted to the interdisciplinary study of history and economics, and is of interest not only to economic historians but to social and demographic historians, as well as economists in general.
    Journal of the History of Ideas
Index to the Journal of Legal History
    The Journal of Military History –published in January, April, July, and October– includes scholarly articles and book reviews on topics in military history from all chronological periods and geographical areas.
    Journal of Modern History

The Journal of Southern Legal History
    Scholarly journals, especially in history, available for searching, viewing, browsing, and printing.
    Law and History Review
Michigan Law Review.
New York University Law Review.
Oxford journals.
    Renaissance Quarterly
 publishes interdisciplinary articles (twelve to sixteen a year) and reviews (about thirty to thirty-five an issue) which cover the most important recent scholarly developments in Renaissance studies. 
    Reviews in American History
Stanford Law Review.
University of Chicago Law Review
University of Southern California Law Review.
University of Wisconsin – Madison Law Review.
Virginia Law Review.
The leading journal in its field of interest, The William and Mary Quarterly publishes refereed scholarship in history and related disciplines from the initial Old World – New World contacts contacts to the early nineteenth century and beyond.
Yale Journal of the Humanities.

Study Guide for Homer’s Odyssey by Robin Mitchell-Boyask, Temple University. These materials are intended for the fair use of all students and teachers. Any links should be duly credited to the author, and students should always cite in papers any help this guide has given them.  References will be to pages, not line numbers, in Robert Fitzgerald’s translation. Important names, ideas or words are underlined, indicated hyperlinks to further information. When using the hyperlinks you must remember that you will often read variants in the myths which Homer uses; try to figure out which departures are significant and which myths help you understand the Homeric versions better. 
Homer’s Odyssey: Index of Web Pages
The ancient world web, language and literature.
Greek and Roman language resources.
University of Toledo: Latin Language Bookmarks
Site links are provided to assist teachers and students of the Classics in acquiring information about other resources available to them on the Internet. There are also links to publishers’ Web sites in the Publishers Directory section of the Software Directory.
The importance of such classical authors as Ovid to the art, music, and literature of western civilization is legendary, yet many are not familiar with the original works that have provided this inspiration. The University of Vermont’s rare book department contains an extensive collection of illustrated works of Ovid. Included are several editions of engravings by the 17th century German artist, Johann Wilhelm Bauer, depicting 150 scenes from the Metamorphoses. Each scene has a brief description in both Latin and German. Some plates from a 1640 edition of the translation done by George Sandys are also available.
A virtual community for teaching and learning the classics.
VRoma is first and foremost a community of scholars, both teachers and students, who help to create on-line resources for teaching Latin and ancient Roman culture and who use these resources in their courses. Many of these “VRomans” learned the skills they use to contribute to the project in the context of workshops held in the summers of 1997 and 1998. Using the VRoma MOO, e-mail, and our web discussion board, they continue to collaborate “virtually” even after the workshops have ended, in order to refine the skills required for successful on-line collaborative teaching and learning.
1100+ Photographs of Ancient Rome and Greece by Leo C. Curran.
Find out what the Greeks and Romans were up to on this day  (yes, it’s back online!).  Your weekly guide to the best (and the rest) of television’s portrayals of the ancient world. Updated every Monday!  A monthly journal providing coverage of the ancient world  as seen in the popular (and  not-so-popular) press.
The Perseus Project: an evolving digital library.
At this web site you find a description of the Roman Forum between 100 BC and 100 AD. The Roman Forum was the centre of ancient Rome. At this web site the Forum is the centre of exploration. It will be the starting point for a great variety of wanderings. Many interesting aspects of  Rome and its inhabitants can be met. Descriptions and views of many historic buildings can be found.

Specialized Links via Law Libraries and Providers
Indiana University School of Law – Bloomington Law Library
Library of Congress
Biddle Law Library University of Pennsylvania Law School
U. Chicago
U. Oregon 
    U. Houston
Washburn University
Lillian Goldman Law Library – Yale Law School

American Legal History Texts
Columbine Review Commission report on the worst school shooting in U.S. history.
AUDIO COLLECTION – HARVARD LAW SCHOOL FORUM. The Harvard Law School Forum is currently digitizing and posting to the web its collection of speeches and panel discussions from the last 40 years.  Tapes (and even transcription discs) of some seventy historic programs have been lying in a file cabinet for years.  Some probably have not been played since their recording.  To release these important programs to the public, they are being posted on the Forum website.
The Ames Foundation, based at Harvard Law School, supports research into legal history through publications (notably the yearbooks of Richard II) and grants.  The site includes a catalog of their publications.
The Southern Poverty Law Center
Yale  Law School Avalon Project
National Constitution Center
Independence Hall Association
Colonial Williamsburg Official Website
Documents in the news.
Anti-Defamation League Website
Catalog of U.S. Government publications.  The Catalog is a search and retrieval service that provides bibliographic records of U.S.  Government information resources. Use it to link to Federal agency online resources or identify materials distributed to Federal Depository Libraries. Coverage begins with January 1994 and new records are added daily. Start searching below or learn more about the Catalog and how to  search it effectively.
The Digital National Security Archive contains more than 35,000 of the most important declassified documents that led  to policy decisions. There are twelve complete collections: Afghanistan, Berlin Crisis 1958-1962, Cuban Missile Crisis,  El Salvador, Iran-Contra Affair, Intelligence Community, Iran Revolution, Military Uses of Space, Nicaragua, Nuclear Non-Proliferation, Philippines, and South Africa. The National Security Archive is an  independent  non-governmental research institute and library located at The George Washington University in Washington, D.C. The Archive collects and publishes declassified documents acquired through the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).
Federal depository library gateways.
Congressional Quarterly.
Legal  History Sources (UTexas)
Literature of Legal History
The Online US Constitution
American Legal History Texts
General Legal History Texts
Documenting the American South — UNC at Chapel Hill Library
WWLIA Access
    Documents for American Legal History (Robert Palmer, University of Houston Law Center.
    Famous American Trials (Douglas Linder, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Law).
    Sweatt v. Painter Archive (Thomas Russell, University of Texas School of Law)
A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774-1873.
Confederate States of America, The Statutes at Large of the Confederate States of America, Commencing with the First Session of the First Congress;1862. Public Laws of the Confederate States of America, Passed at the First Session of the First Congress; 1862.  Private Laws of the Confederate States of America, Passed at the First Session of the First Congress; 1862.
Legal History website edited by Thomas D. Russell, University of Texas at Austin School of Law.

State Legal History Sites

Alabama Hawaii Massachusetts New Mexico South Dakota
Alaska Idaho Michigan New York Tennessee
Arizona Illinois Minnesota North Carolina Texas
Arkansas Indiana Mississippi North Dakota Utah
California Iowa Missouri Ohio Vermont
Colorado Kansas Montana Oklahoma Virginia
Connecticut Kentucky Nebraska Oregon Washington
Delaware Louisiana Nevada Pennsylvania West Virginia
Florida Maine New Hampshire Rhode Island Wisconsin
Georgia Maryland New Jersey South Carolina Wyoming

Alabama Department of Archives and History
Alabama Supreme Court

Alaska Archives and Manuscript Repositories, Alaska State Library, Alaska Historical Collections Archives, and Records Management – Denali National Park and Preserve Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve Glacier Bay National Park and…
Alaska State Library Home Page TEXT ONLY Deyette’s Water Wagon in Nome. William W. and Neeta Tobey Sale Collection Alaska State Library, PCA 384-285 MORE Quick Information Directory (Hours, Telephone Fax Numbers, Addresses More) Services Programs Services to State, and so on.
Alaska Supreme Court Opinions

The Arizona History and Archives Division identifies, collects, preserves and provides access to the historical manuscripts, government records, books, and photographs of Arizona and its peoples.
This site, created by the Research Division, provides access to information or documents made available by Arizona state agencies on the World Wide Web.
Arizona Supreme Court.

Arkansas archives and Historical Reference.
Arkansas Supreme Court

Online Archives of California.  Finding aidses/archives.htm
The California State Archives, a division of the Office of the Secretary of State, continues to serve in the spirit of those early instructions, providing a repository for the state’s permanent governmental records as well as other materials documenting California history.
The Online Archive of California, the American Heritage Virtual Archive, the Museums and the Online Archive of California, and the California Heritage Digital Image Access Project are four collaborative projects to create a searchable online union database of finding aids to archival collections. This database includes the finding aids to repositories from several institutions statewide and is continuing to expand.
California Courts home page

The Colorado State Archives is endeavoring to provide on-line name indexes to many of our collections. New indexes will be added periodically. The following is a list of the indexes that we now have on-line. If you find a name on any of these lists, and if you would like a copy of the record, please contact us. We will respond to mail, e-mail, and phone requests. We do have search, handling, and copy fees. Please contact us in order to find out the charges for your request.
Colorado Supreme Court
Columbine Review Commission report to Governor Bill Owns.  This report looks at the worst shooting in U.S. school history.

Since 1855, the Connecticut State Library has acquired historical records from the three branches  of State government. In 1909, the General Assembly made the State Library the official State Archives.
Connecticut Supreme and Appellate Courts
Law Library System of the Connecticut Judicial Branch
Connecticut Historical Resource Guide

Delaware State archives and manuscript repositories collections.
Delaware Supreme Court

Florida state archives photographic collection
Florida Bureau of Archives and Records Management
Florida Supreme Court

The mission of the Georgia Department of Archives and History is to select and ensure the preservation and accessibility of government and other information constituting Georgia’s recorded history.
Chartered by the Georgia legislature in 1839, The Georgia Historical Society is a private, non-profit organization that serves as the historical society for the entire state of Georgia. For nearly 160 years, the Society has fulfilled its mission to collect, preserve, and share Georgia’s history through a variety of exciting educational outreach programs:
Georgia Supreme Court

The Hawaii State Archives has over 10,000 cubic feet of material within its collections. The largest groups of government records include Records of the Executive Branch, Legislative Branch, Judiciary Records, and Governor’s records.  Over 483 collections of private papers, manuscripts and records documenting the social, economic, civic or political history of Hawaii.
Hawaii Supreme Court

Idaho State Historical Society 
Idaho Legal Home Page

The Abraham Lincoln Association has placed the entire 1953 version of Roy P. Basler et al., eds., The Collected Works of Abraham Lincoln online. This searchable textbase does not include the two smaller supplements published later. The textbase is made available through the efforts of the Humanities TextInitiative. You can conduct simple, boolean, and proximity searches and there is also a word wheel for the entire text.
This on-line version of the Descriptive Inventory of the Archives of the State of Illinois, Second Edition, is a continuation of the efforts of the Illinois State Archives to make its records holdings as fully known and accessible as  practicable.
Illinois Supreme Court

The Indiana State Archives is the official repository of Indiana government records of permanent historical and legal significance. It principally contains records generated by state government and state agencies, but also holds a major collection of county and local government records.
Indiana Supreme Court

Archives and Manuscript Repositories in Iowa.

Kansas State Historical Society
The Society operates State Historic Sites around Kansas. Here’s some information about the fifteen sites that are open to the public.
Kansas Supreme Court

The Kentucky Guide Program was established in 1979 to promote the use of primary source materials housed in archival and manuscript repositories throughout Kentucky. Collections are at nearly 300 archives.
Founded in 1836, the Society is a state agency and non-profit membership organization that reaches across  the commonwealth to collect oral histories, promote folklife traditions, erect highway historical markers, publish historical resources, advise community museums, and organize special traveling exhibits.
Kentucky Supreme Court

Welcome to the website of the Historic New Orleans Collection. Through it, you can learn about current exhibitions and public programs, our publications, a complex of historic buildings, research collections, guided tours and gift shop. We hope that we will assist you in discovering and appreciating the history, art, and culture of one of the world’s most fascinating places.
Louisiana Supreme Court

USGenWeb Maine Archives (Digital Library)
Maine Supreme Judicial Court

The Maryland State Archives is the historical agency for Maryland and serves as the  central depository for government records of permanent value. Records date from the founding of the colony in 1634 to the 1990s.

Preserving Massachusetts historical and legal records and promoting their use by its citizens.
Massachusetts Supreme Court Official Website
Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Slip Opinions

The Michigan legislature.
The Michigan Attorney General.
With documents dating back to 1797, the State Archives of Michigan houses much of Michigan’s record  heritage.
Michigan Supreme Court

Connect with Minnesota’s people and their stories, past and present. You’ll find lots to discover.
Minnesota Supreme Court decisions.

Mississippi Department of Archives and History
Mississippi Supreme Court

The Missouri State Archives was established in 1965 as the repository for state records of permanent value.
Missouri Supreme Court

The Montana Historical Society is the oldest historical organization in the West. Founded in 1865, nearly a quarter century before statehood, the Society was initially a private organization restricted to prominent Montana pioneers.
Montana legal information

Nebraska State Historical Society Home Page.  The official source for Nebraska History
Nebraska Supreme Court and Court of Appeals Opinions of the Nebraska Supreme Court And Court of Appeals (Criminal/Juvenile Cases).

Nevada Historical Society – Nevada History on the Web. These links lead to various WWW sites about Nevada’s history. Their contents range from classroom material, to commercial inducement, to the work of amateur historians, to tourist information, to academic scholarship…
NSLA – Archives Records – State Historical Records Advisory Board Nevada State Archives and Records Management State Historical Records Advisory Board About the State Historical Records Advisory Board State Historical Records Advisory Board Members Nevada Revised Statute –  Chapter 378A Grants for Historical…
Nevada Supreme Court Executive Branch | Legislative Branch | Judicial Branch Federal Representatives Nevada Supreme Court.

New Hampshire Division of Records Management and Archives
    New Hampshire State Library
New Hampshire Supreme Court. Welcome to the New Hampshire Supreme Court. This site contains information including Slip Opinions, Case Lists, and Oral Argument Calendars and Case Synopses.

New Jersey State Archives – The state archives is the official repository for all New Jersey colonial and state government records of enduring historical value.
New Jersey Supreme Court

New Mexico Archives Project History of the University of New Mexico Archives program The University Archives was established in 1985 in conjunction with planning for the University Centennial celebration in 1989. The purpose of the archives is to collect, organize, preserve..
New Mexico Supreme Court – State Judiciary and Court Information. Case Search facility to allow a search by name or case number for cases heard in either district or magistrate courts.

New York State Archives and Records Administration Home Page
New-York Historical Society  Chronology Library Collections – The New-York Historical Society houses a research library consisting of approximately half a million books and pamphlets, 2 million manuscripts, over 10,000 newspaper titles, over 10,000 maps, and much, much more.
New York State Archives Researcher Services Information – Researcher Services from the New York State Archives
New York State Archives Related Sites
    While in most states the highest court is called the Supreme Court, New York’s highest court is its Court of Appeals.

North Carolina Division of Archives and History
The North Carolina Collection, a department in the Academic Affairs Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, began the formal development of a photographic archive in 1929.
North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources
North Carolina Supreme Court

The State Archives and Historical Research Library division is responsible for the documentary collections of the State Historical Society of North Dakota.
Archives and manuscript depositories in North Dakota
North Dakota Supreme Court

Ohio History Central is a dynamic online encyclopedia of Ohio’s history, archaeology and natural history. Using timelines, images, artifacts, maps and documents, Ohio’s rich history is chronicled.  Current and future entries will give an overview of prehistoric and historic Native Americans and their cultures, Ohio’s geology and geography, the diversity of the state’s wildlife, and the growth of the region from settlement to statehood and beyond.
Ohio Supreme Court decisions.

Oklahoma Historical Society
Oklahoma Supreme Court Network
Final report of the commission to study the 1921 Tulsa race riot.

Oregon Historical Society
Oregon Supreme Court

Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
Pennsylvania Judicial System

Rhode Island Supreme Court.
Archives and manuscript repositories in Rhode Island.

The Department preserves and promotes the documentary and cultural heritage of South Carolina.  Explore the links below to learn more about South Carolina’s rich history through our Homepage.
South Carolina Legal History Index

South Dakota Library
South Dakota Supreme Court

Tennessee State Library and Archives.
Opinions of the Tennessee Supreme Court from 1995.
Opinions of the Tennessee Supreme Court from 1995.

The Texas Supreme Court Historical Society, dedicated to preserving the history of the state’s highest civil court, is ten years old, and as of yet does not have a web site.

Texas State Archives  houses the state’s court records:
Also, the next best site in the state for legal research would be the UT School of Law Tarlton Law Library site.

The best general academic archives by far is the UT Center for American History, which includes judicial and legal collections
Baylor also has an excellent site, including judicial collections.
South Texas College of Law Library: A small, but growing site on legal collections.
The Texas State Historical Association, the p
The online New Handbook of Texas, the best starting point for research on any individual involved with Texas legal history.
East Texas Historical Association
New Southwest Collection/Special Collections Library at Texas Tech University.
Texas Historical Commission 
South Texas Historical Association The South Texas Historical Association was founded in 1954 “to encourage the organization and to aid in the development of local historical societies and to discover, collect, preserve, and publish historical.
Texas Supreme Court
This web site  contains Gammel’s “The Laws of Texas” Vol 1-10 in electronic form with indexes.  This covers laws from 1823-1905 and is a very rare collection in hardcopy.

Utah’s Online Library.
Utah State Archives.
Utah state courts.

Vermont state archives.
Vermont Supreme Court opinions since volume 161.

The Virginia Historical Society’s mission is to collect, preserve, and interpret the commonwealth’s past for the education and enjoyment of present and future generations.
The Supreme Court of Virginia . The Supreme Court of Virginia is one of the oldest continuous judicial bodip;   Washington State Archives Central Regional Branch
Archives in Washington state.
Washington State Supreme Court.

Opinions of the West Virginia Supreme Court back to 1991.
West Virginia Archives and History.

Wisconsin Historical Society.
Wisconsin court system.

Wyoming State Archives. 
Wyoming Territorial Supreme Court
United States District Court: Wyoming

Legal History Courses
Western Legal Tradition.
American legal history.
American legal history at University of Pittsburgh School of Law.
American legal history and the 14th Amendment at Barnard College.
Problems in English legal and constitutional history

American South
The Southern Historical Collection, long known for its strong collections of antebellum plantation, Civil War, and Reconstruction South materials continues to acquire 18th- and 19th-century manuscripts along with substantial collections of 20th-century materials. The holdings are diverse. There are letters written by Southerners from remote parts of the world, journals of plantation owners from throughout the South, documents of people who spent their entire lives in small North Carolina communities, and oral history interviews with textile workers and bank presidents.
Documenting the American South (DAS) is a collection of sources on Southern history, literature and culture from the colonial period through the first decades of the 20th century.  It is organized into the projects listed above. The next one, now in the planning stage, will feature North Caroliniana. The Academic Affairs Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill sponsors DAS, and the texts come primarily from its Southern  holdings. An editorial board guides its development.
The Valley of the Shadow Project takes two communities, one Northern and one Southern, through the experience of the American Civil War. The project is a hypermedia archive of thousands of sources for the period before, during, and after the Civil War for Augusta County, Virginia, and Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Those sources include newspapers, letters, diaries,  photographs, maps, church records, population census, agricultural census, and military records.  Students can explore every dimension of the conflict and write their own histories, reconstructing the life stories of women, African Americans, farmers, politicians, soldiers, and families. The project is intended for secondary schools, community colleges, libraries, and universities.

Manuscript Collections and Archives
National Archives homepage.
     Harvard Law School Library
Watergate tapes and transcripts.
Library of Congress homepage.
Columbia University Rare Book and Manuscript Library.

Cases from the FBI FOIA Reading Room which  have been selected for inclusion at this site.   These cases have been placed in categories by type of records and also alphabetically listed.

National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections
NUCMC, or the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections, is a free-of-charge cooperative cataloging  program operated by the Library of Congress. Check out the resources below to find out more about our program, about archives and manuscript repositories, and about topics of interest to archivists and their institutions’ patrons.

Quantitative Data
    Bureau of Justice Statistics
U.S. Census Bureau

Law and Society Programs
University of California, Berkeley Center for the Study of Law and Society
University of Wisconsin, Madison Law School Institute for Legal Studies
New York University’s Institute for Law and Society
Columbia Law School Center for the Study of Law and Culture
Edinburgh Law School Centre for Law and Society

Law and Economics Programs
University of California, Berkeley Boalt Hall School of Law Program in Law, Economics, and Institutions.
    University of Chicago School of Law Program in Law and Economics
    Harvard Law School Center for Law, Economics, and Business
Yale Law School Law, Economics, and Organization Workshop
Stanford Law School Program in Law and Economics
University of Michigan Law School Center for Law and Economics
University of Pennsylvania Law School Center for Law and Economics
University of Southern California Center for Law, Economics, and Organization

Bar Associations
American Bar Association
Canadian Bar Association
Federal Bar Association
Law Society of Scotland
National Bar Association

Oliver Wendell Holmes

James C. McReynolds

John Marshall

George Sutherland

William Howard Taft

Earl Warren

Biographical Dictionary

Martin Luther King, Jr. Biography and Links

Abraham Lincoln Legal Papers

Abraham Lincoln Association

Justice Thurgood Marshall: A Selected Bibliography

Presidents of the United States Internet Public Library

South Carolina Legal History (mostly historical figures)

Supreme Court Justice Biographies and Links

The Booker T. Washington Papers

Women’s Legal History Biography Project

Federal Courts
The site, part of the Federal Judicial Center’s Web page, provides a major, previously-unpublished reference source for the history of the federal courts.  The Courts section of the site contains the legislative histories of courts and circuits within the federal judiciary, as well as lists of chief judges and information on the location of the official records of each court. The section on Landmark Judicial Legislation presents the text of 21 statutes related to the organization and administration of the judiciary. Each act is introduced by a note describing its historical significance. Other features of the site include the on-line presentation of an exhibit of historic photographs of federal courthouses and a selection of reports on topics related to federal judicial history. The site was prepared by the staff of the Center’s Federal Judicial History Office, which welcomes reference questions submitted at the site.  The Center, an agency within the judicial branch of government, was created by Congress in 1967 to provide the federal courts continuing education and training, and research on court operations and procedures. One of the Center’s statutory mandates is to “conduct, coordinate, and encourage programs relating to the history of the judicial branch of the United States government.

This site is a great resource for looking up relatively recent legislative information and researching new federal laws.

Global Legal Resources
More than 4000 links to legal sites in more than 40 countries.
JURIST, the Legal Information Network is directed by Professor Bernard J. Hibbits of the University of Pittsburgh School of Law in consultation with an international Advisory Board.

Subscription Databases

Gale -The Making of Modern Law
The Making of Modern Law series from Gale includes millions of pages of digitized primary and secondary sources on Anglo-American legal history divided up into several products: Trials, 1600-1926, which provides access to over 10,000 printed trial accounts, primarily from the U.S. and UK. U.S. Supreme Court Records and Briefs, 1832-1978, which features digitized briefs and documents for more than 75,000 U.S. Supreme Court cases: Legal Treatises 1800-1926, which contains more than 21,000 titles relating to the practice of law in the Anglo-American world. Primary Sources and Primary Sources II 1620-1970: These two series offer more than 3 million pages of primary law documents relating to the United States, including state codes, constitutional convention documents, local statutes, and a wealth of other hard to find material.

HeinOnline contains several collections that provide over 12 million digitized pages of U.S. federal executive, legislative, and judicial documents which cover the history of the governmental apparatus of the United States from its founding to the present. Hein also offers additional products that provide access to large runs of law journals, the English Reports full reprints series, various Canadian reports, and world constitutions.

LLMC digital offers access to millions of pages of digitized primary and secondary sources relating to legal history worldwide. Particularly strong in the US, UK, and former British Empire, LLMC also has specialized collections on continental Canon law and the history of Haiti.

LexisNexis Academic
Cousin to the familiar legal product, LN-Academic offers researchers access to a wide variety of state and federal law reports.

Proquest Congressional
ProQuest Congressional provides access to a comprehensive collection of federal legislative material.

Public Access to Court Electronic Records (PACER)
Fee-for-use database of current federal judicial filings and paperwork.

Open Access Resources

U.S. Federal

Case Reports:
The following sites provide free access provides access to recent federal and state reported cases as well as a complete set of the U.S. Supreme Court reports:


Google Scholar Law Resources


Court Listener – UC Berkeley

Historical and Contemporary Documents

Government Printing Office
Publications of the Government Printing Office including a wealth of legislative and executive branch documents such as Congressional hearings and the Federal Register.

U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates 1774-1875, Library of Congress
Portal providing access to a comprehensive set of legislative debates and documents for the first 100 years of the United States.

Legal Information Institute, Cornell University
The LII offers an array of free state and federal legal documents, with a focus on the 20th and 21st centuries.

Includes a database of PACER documents available for free on the web.

Papers of the Presidents
Over 100,000 documents related to the presidency of the United States including the series Messages and Papers of the Presidents (1789-1913) and Public Papers of the Presidents (1929-2007).

History of the Federal Judiciary, Federal Judicial Center
“This site offers a wealth of background information about the history of the U. S. federal courts, including brief overviews of institutional evolution for particular courts, biographies of federal judges, and some primary source materials, chiefly involving a selected set of famous American trials, and the text of pivotal judicial legislation.”

Oyez Oyez Oyez
Digitized recordings of oral arguments before the US Supreme Court from 1955 to the present

Social Security Administration Oral Histories
Oral histories relating to the operation and growth of the SSA.

FDA Notices of Judgments Collection

Native American Constitution and Law Digitization Project, University of Oklahoma
Provides full text of many Native American tribal constitutions and other legal documents

9th Circuit Historical Records Index System
Briefs and supporting documents for appeals in the 9th circuit, 1891-1970.

U.S. State Legislative and Judicial Material

In addition to these resources, the Internet Archive and Hathi Trust hold thousands of freely available digitized volumes of state court reports and legislative proceedings.


Internet Archive:

State Statutes and Legislation Online
Provides links to the full text of state statutes and legislation including some historical material.

University of Iowa College of Law listing of online sources by jurisdiction
Directory to state legal material and primary sources

Primary Source collections

United States

The Avalon Project, Yale Law School
Hundreds of primary source documents on the political, legal, and diplomatic history of the United States. Includes a wealth of treaties, charters, and statutes.

Archives of Maryland Online
Nearly half a million digitized historic records from the Maryland State Archives. Dating from 1634-2008.

Colonial Connecticut Records, 1636-1776, University of Connecticut
Digitized versions of the published volumes of The Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut

Litchfield Law School Sources (1774-1833)
A wealth of digitized material on the Litchfield Law School including original notebooks, ledgers, and other papers

Slaves and the Courts 1740-1860, The Library of Congress
A selection of over 100 printed sources on the history of law and slavery in the United States.

Louisiana Supreme Court Records (1813-1878), University of New Orleans
Online archive of thousands of digitized manuscript records of the early Louisiana Supreme Court.

Joseph Story Digital Suite
126 digitized items from the Harvard Law School collection relating to Joseph Story (1779-1845)

John Jay Papers, Columbia University
Provides access to thousands of digitized manuscripts relating to John Jay – primarily correspondence.

Historical Publications of the United States Commission on Civil Rights, Thurgood Marshall Law Library, University of Maryland
PDF versions of hundreds of USCCR documents.

The Legacy Tobacco Documents Library, University of California-San Francisco
“Searchable database of 7 million documents produced in discovery as a result of lawsuits brought against the tobacco industry. Site links to numerous other web repositories of documents related to tobacco litigation.”

Nineteenth-Century Texas Law Online, 1822-1897 University of North Texas
“Digitized version of Gammel’s The Laws of Texas, including all acts of the Texas Legislature, many documents concerning Texas constitutional conventions, and some Gubernatorial papers.”

Coles County Legal History Project, Eastern Illinois University
“An ongoing project to make nineteenth-century legal records from Eastern Illinois counties available on the web, mostly through a transcribed, searchable database. The cases include both civil and criminal proceedings, from 1830 to 1899. To date, most entries in the databases include only extensive indexes of the actual records, which come from sixteen counties and are housed at the EIU Library.”

New Hampshire Bar Legal History Project, New Hampshire Bar Foundation
“The New Hampshire Bar Foundation has compiled over 50 oral history interviews with attorneys from the state, addressing various dimensions of post-World War II legal history.”

Legal Oral History Interviews, Biddle Law Library
Digitized and transcribed interviews with prominent lawyers and legal figures.

Robert Brooker III collection of American Legal and Land Use Documents, 1716-1930
Hundreds of digitized deeds, legal forms, and other conveyancing ephemera.

Trials and Printed Pamphlets

Harvard Law School Broadside Collection
Nearly 300 broadsides of dying speeches mostly from 18th and 19th c. Britain

Piracy Trials 1696-1905, Law Library of Congress
Fifty seven printed piracy trials from the Law Library of Congress.

Trial Pamphlets Collection (1668-1909), Cornell University
Several hundred popular pamphlets detailing legal proceedings, with the majority coming from the 19th century Anglo-American world.

Studies in Scarlet: Marriage, Women, and the Law, 1815-1914, Harvard Law School
Digital collection of more than 400 printed trial accounts from the Anglo-American world relating to women, marriage, and sexuality

Salem Witchcraft Trials, Documentary Archive, University of Virginia
Selection of documents and transcriptions relating to the 1692 witchcraft trials as well as transcriptions of the Essex Co. sessions courts from 1636-1686.

Nuremberg Trials Project, Harvard Law School Library
Over 32,000 digitized pages of documents and transcriptions related to the Nuremberg war crimes trials.

Tokyo War Crimes Trial Project, University of Virginia Law School Library
Includes over 4,000 scanned documents relating to the post-WWII Tokyo tribunal.

Evidence from the Haymarket Affair, 1886-1887, Library of Congress
More than 3,000 pages of documents and proceedings from the Haymarket Trial

Duluth Lynchings, 1920, Minnesota Historical Society
Photographs, newspapers, and digitized court documents relating to the lynching of three African-American men in Duluth.

Famous Trials, Douglas Linder, University of Missouri-Kansas City
Douglas Linder’s “Famous Trials” site provides primary sources on 72  notable trials from the 399 BCE trial of Socrates  to Zacarias Moussaoui’s 2006 trial.

British Legal History

Anglo-American Legal Tradition, University of Houston
Links to over a million images of original documents from the UK National Archives dating from 1176 to 1800. These include plea rolls from the King’s Bench, Common Pleas, and Exchequer as well as feet of fines, coroners’ rolls, Privy Council registers, and an impressive array of all manner of other legal material.

English Law Yearbooks, 1268-1535, David Seipp, Boston University
Index to medieval legal proceedings, with more than 20,000 records

The Parliament rolls of Medieval England – 1275-1504
Searchable database of all parliamentary records from the medieval period.

Diocecsan Courts of the Archbishopric of York 1300-1858
More than 14,000 digitized documents from the Ecclesiastical Court at York

The Old Bailey Online
An indispensable resource for those working on English legal history. Contains full-text searchable accounts of trials at London’s primary criminal court from 1674 to 1913.

Commonwealth Legal Information Institute, English Reports Reprints
The Commonwealth Legal Information Institute provides access here to PDF versions of the entirety of the English Reports reprint series, 1220-1873

Privy Council Papers Online
Index and database of appeals to the Privy Council from the 18th to the 21st centuries.

Other Foreign Sources

Indian Kanoon
Indian court reports and laws from the 19th to 21st centuries

NYU GlobalLex

Global Legal Information Network

For continental and medieval legal history see Otto Vervaart’s excellent list of digitized legal manuscripts from European Royal Libraries:

This listing draws from the Triangle Legal History Seminar’s excellent guide to primary sources on the web as well as my own list of links done for the Center for Research Libraries

History Departments
History departments around the world. 
Yahoo’s guide to colleges and universities.