The Law Library of Congress Christine Sellers, Legal Reference Specialist Robert Newlen, Assistant Law Librarian for Collections, Outreach and Services Law Library of Congress February 2011
Today’s Presentation • The Library of Congress • Mission • Overview • The Law Library of Congress • Mission • Overview • Digital resources • Ask a Librarian • Social Media • Other Legal Resources • Questions
The Library of Congress Mission To support the Congress in fulfilling its constitutional duties and to further the progress of knowledge and creativity for the benefit of the American people.
The Library of Congress Overview • Oldest U.S. federal cultural institution • Serves as the research arm of the U.S. Congress • Has a permanent staff of about 3,600 employees • Largest library in the world • Contains more than 144 million items in 420 languages including: • 22 million books • 3 million sound recordings • 12.5 million photographs • 5.3 million maps • 64 million manuscripts
The Library of Congress Online Resources • General information • Resources for specific audiences • Digital Collections • World Digital Library • Online Catalog • Inter-Library Loan
The Law Library of Congress Overview • Established by law in 1832 as aseparate department of the Library of Congress • Largest law library in the world • Over 2.78 million volumes that include U.S. state and Federal materials, foreign codes, constitutions, official gazettes, law reports, treatises, serials, and laws from all historical periods • Covering some 267 existing nations and jurisdictions • Working reference collection of approximately65,000 volumes in the public reading room • Has a staff of about 20 attorneys with law degrees from various countries who build the collection and use it to respond to research/reference requests
The Law Library of Congress Mission The mission of the Law Library of Congress is to provide research and legal information to the U.S. Congress as well as to U.S. Federal Courts and Executive Agencies, and to offer reference services to the public.
The Law Library of Congress Online Resources • Current Legal Topics http://www.loc.gov/law/help/current-topics.php • Global Legal Monitor http: //www.loc.gov/lawweb/servlet/lloc_news • Guide to Law Online http://www.loc.gov/law/help/guide • Global Legal Information Network (GLIN) http://www.glin.gov • THOMAS http://thomas.loc.gov • Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation http://memory.loc.gov/ammem/amlaw/
Current Legal Topicshttp://www.loc.gov/law/help/current-topics.php • International Issues • Legal commentary • Historical Events • Commemorative Observations • Bibliographic resources
Global Legal Monitorhttp://www.loc.gov/lawweb/servlet/lloc_news • Launched in May 2006 • Worldwide legal news • Frequently updated • Can be searched by topic, country, keyword, author or date • Persistent URLs
Guide to Law Onlinehttp://www.loc.gov/law/help/guide.php • Legal Portal of over 9,000 links • Annotated compilation of Internet links • Organized by jurisdiction and topics • Multinational, international, U.S. and state materials • Full text of laws, regulations, and cases • Legal commentary
Global Legal Information Network www.glin.gov • A cooperative, not-for-profit federation ofgovernment agencies and institutions that contribute national legal information to the GLIN database • Database contains statutes, regulations and related legal materials that originate from countries around the world
Global Legal Information Network • Authoritative – Official – Current – Complete • Four modules: statutes, regulations, and ordinances; legal writings; judicial decisions; and legislative records • Full text of 180,000+ legal instruments from 50jurisdictions • Searchable by subject terms and legal conceptsthrough the use of a centralized thesaurus