Thursday, April 25, 2013

Historical State Codes on HeinOnline

Ever try to research old state statutes? Ever need to know how the language changed over the years? Ever need a snapshot in time –  from a really long time ago?

Gallagher Law Library patrons have always been able to use our rich historical collection of print state statutes. It’s quite something to go down to the Compact Stacks on L2 and pull out an old code and find what you need. We also have a collection of state session laws on microfiche and in digital form on HeinOnline. And now Gallagher patrons have a fabulous new source – HeinOnline’s State Statutes: A Historical Archive. It includes superseded statutes for all fifty states, with coverage as far back as 1717. The end dates seem to vary, but Washington State, for example starts with the Code of 1881 and ends with the 1961 supplement to the 1951 Revised Code of Washington. Not bad!

Sharp blog readers might ask, but . . . what about the Washington laws before 1881? We have the territorial session laws in print, of course, and Hein has them in the Session Laws Library. The key is to use both the Session Laws Library and the State Statutes Historical Archive.

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