Articles Posted in General Legal Research Resources

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Oregon’s Classroom Law Project (CLP) has created a list of: Civics Digital Resources for Remote Learning

During this unprecedented time when teachers must adjust to providing digital resources and connections for their students, Classroom Law Project is committed to providing and curating links to sites, lessons, ideas, and resources that might help you teach remotely. We will update this page as we continue to find resources….” [Link to CLP Civics Resources page.]

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Guest post, from Lee Van Duzer, Washington County Law Librarian, Hillsboro, Oregon:

As we socially distance ourselves and physical spaces are increasingly closed, it is important to revisit online legal research options. The following are free general legal research tools to help you work from home.

Case Law & Statutes

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Official articles of impeachment are voted upon by the U.S. House of Representatives. Look for House Resolutions and House Reports at Congress dot gov.

You can find them in print in large law or government document libraries and usually, though not always easily, online. Some online Congressional research resources are fee-based databases and some are free.

For example, see previous post from September 26, 2019: What Does an Article of Impeachment Look Like? Read Presidents Nixon and Clinton Articles

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One of my favorite Robert Mankoff (New Yorker) cartoons has this caption (and you can search the Cartoon Bank for a copy): “One question: If this is the Information Age, how come nobody knows anything?

Few non-librarians know about the hundreds (thousands, probably) of hidden document treasure troves, which go by many names: libraries, archives, repositories, databases, among others.

You’ve probably heard about Gutenberg and maybe even HathiTrust, but what about SCRIBD, SCETI, Feedbooks, BASE, Unglueit, and many, many, MANY more, including our intrepid public records warriers, at Public Resource and PlainSite.

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The official PDF of the Mueller report has been updated in a subtle but important way,” by Zachary M. Seward, April 22, 2019.” (Qz dot com)

See also:

“Delivering the Mueller Report in Eleven Links,” May 2019 (Jill O’Neill is the Director of Content for NISO dot org.)

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Every federal employee knows about the Hatch Act, which dates back to 1939:

Wikipedia Hatch Act article

You can Google the following searches to find out more about the Hatch Act:

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There are print versions of the April 18, 2019, Mueller Report (“Report on the Investigation into Russian Interference in the 2016 Presidential Election“) in the marketplace (although one publication has virtually unreadable tiny print) and there are multiple online versions so take your pick.

Many public libraries have the e-book and some may have the print.

Link to a PDF copy of the report from, among other places, the Wikipedia Mueller Report article, e.g. from the “External links” section of the article.

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Without access to a library that subscribes to a Congressional documents database (or that has retained the print), you will have a devil of a time finding many Congressional documents, especially those before the 94th Congress (1975-76) or after 1865. (See the LOC Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation, the National Archives, or the GPO Congressional Documents database.)

You might want to try Congress dot gov, where you’ll find bills and resolutions and, hmmm – no reports.

Let’s say you want to find this document, which is a “report.”

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Scroll down if you want to skip this intro and go right to the book’s bibliographic info.

The first article I wrote as a new law librarian (I’m now retired!) was on the difference between the meaning of “primary source”  when researching history and the meaning of “primary source” when researching the law. (Yes, there is overlap, but it’s important to understand the distinction so you don’t confuse your readers or your students.)

Then as now, the practice of law librarianship was the practice of Learning New Things Every Day. (That is also why I started this Oregon Legal Research blog when I moved to Oregon, after more than a decade teaching and learning about federal law resources. I could call this blog, What I Learned Today About Oregon Legal Research, but brevity is king and queen in the blogger-space – at least it’s aspirational, ahem.)

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