Union List of Legislative Histories


For several decades the Legislative Research Special Interest Section of the Law Librarians' Society of Washington, D.C. published a Union List of Legislative Histories. See, for instance, the 1950 1st edition digitized through the Hathi Trust Digital Library. The most recent edition is the 7th edition published in loose-leaf in the year 2000 and accompanied by a 2002 supplement. This work of nearly 800 pages is out-of-print, but is now available in PDF at no cost to members of the Society (username and password required). It notes the legislative history collections of more than 120 libraries in the Washington, D.C. area.

The Union List, organized by public law number, lists several thousand U.S. public laws from 1790 to 2002 for which legislative histories have been compiled by one or more libraries listed. Most of the histories listed in the publication were painstakingly compiled in-house, and each compilation usually contains a copy of the public law as enacted along with the various bill versions, reports, and Congressional debates and remarks associated with the law's development as well as a table of contents page. Often, hearings, committee prints, and other documents are also included. In addition to listing the holding library, each with an abbreviation code, the Union List provides contact information, addresses, and interlibrary loan policies, but this information is out of date and many of the firms and agencies listed have ceased to exist or have been merged into other entities. Also, some legislative history collections may no longer exist in tangible form (such as those from Covington & Burling and Arnold & Porter digitized by HeinOnline or Westlaw) and many libraries will not loan or will only loan locally. Due to the increasing availability of digitized legislative histories (Congress.gov, HeinOnline, Lexis, Westlaw, Proquest), this 7th edition and its 2002 supplement may become the last edition of the Union List 

The Law Librarians Society of Washington, D.C. is most grateful to the Legislative Research Special Interest Section for its work in compiling the seventh edition of the Union List. The committee that worked on the publication included David Mao (Chairman) with Covington & Burling; Lorelle Anderson with Crowell & Moring; Debbie Atkins with Arent Fox Kintner Plotkin & Kahn; Rick McKinney with the Federal Reserve Board; Julia Taylor (supplement chairman) with Dickstein Shapiro, Morin and Oshinsky; Mike Welsh with Shaw Pittman; Christine Ciambella with Miller & Chevalier; Connie Dickson with Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher; and Margot Gee with Fried, Frank, Harris, Shriver & Jacobson. The Society also wishes to extend appreciation to Tenisha Brown with the Federal Reserve Board, who digitized the publication into PDF.

Please email your questions or comments to the Legislative SIS.

Last revised on October 31, 2016