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The True Portraiture of Judge Littleton – Pic of the Week

At a recent public event, I presented a display of books from the Law Library’s Rare Book Collection including this unusually printed 1591 edition of Littleton’s Tenures.  One of the attractive features of the book is that it contains two very nice engravings that were bound into it ahead of the title page.  The engravings, […]

Laws of the Russian Federation – Global Legal Collection Highlights

The following is a guest post by Peter Roudik, Director of  Global Legal Research at the Law Library of Congress.  Peter has previously contributed various posts to In Custodia Legis, including on the Pittsburgh Agreement, the ASIL Annual Meeting, Russia’s immigration policies and the U.S. Trade Act, and the Treaty on the Creation of the […]

The World’s Legal Heritage in Great Subterranean Halls, or… A Collection Big with Babylonian Perspective

A walk through the stacks of the Law Library of Congress will give you a vivid sense, if you had ever wondered, of what more than a million books looks like.  Current statistics show that the Law Library houses 2.78 million physical volumes in its collection.  Nearly all of these are stored in four gigantesque […]

The First Feminist Congress of Mexico

The following blog post was a joint effort by Christina Turiano, Jeffrey Helm, and the Hispanic Division of the Library of Congress.  March was Women’s History Month; but as Luis de Góngora y Argote would put it, “Fortune yields goods that are not yet writ: when whistles flutes, when flutes whistles.” The serendipitous act of such a rare find as this can […]

Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation – Pic of the Week

Following Wednesday’s Law Day program, we were fortunate to have the first draft of the Emancipation Proclamation, handwritten by President Abraham Lincoln, on display at the close of the program. The draft proclamation, which was first read by President Lincoln to his cabinet on July 22, 1862, is rarely displayed.  The remarkable document features President Lincoln’s […]

Mutiny and Other Crimes: Another Tale from the South Seas (Part 2)

Yesterday I published a post that provided some background information on Pitcairn Island: the mutiny on board the HMS Bounty led by Fletcher Christian on April 28, 1789; the settlement of Pitcairn (and subsequent emigration to Norfolk Island); William Bligh’s long trip home to England; and the court-martials of some of the mutineers that decided […]

South Africa Freedom Day

Today marks the 19th anniversary of South Africa’s first multiracial, democratic elections, known to South Africans as Freedom Day.  This is a day of great significance in South Africa’s history as “a landmark in the inauguration of a non-racial democracy” after a long history of colonialism, segregation  and Apartheid. Much has been written about Apartheid […]