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The 20th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution

I had an interesting query a few months ago from a patron about a proposed constitutional amendment which the patron believed President Lincoln had signed.  This was unusual in itself since Article V of the U.S. Constitution does not require presidents to sign constitutional amendments passed by Congress.  The key to this query was the date […]

Happy New Year! A Look Back at 2012 on In Custodia Legis

We have now completed our second full calendar year of In Custodia Legis.  Our team of bloggers has continued to grow as we aim to share what we learn with you.  We posted just over 240 times in the last twelve months!  And we have been joined by Margaret, Tina, Jeanine, Donna, Barbara, and Robert during that period.  Eleven […]

The November Update to Congress.gov

We are continuing to push forward on Congress.gov! We are working hard to refine the beta.  Can you believe the launch was already two months ago? As with the first iterative update to Congress.gov, Jeanine has updated the About Congress.gov page: November 2012 Highlights of minor updates include: Member profiles search order tuning; Clarification of “Party history” for Members […]

Civil War Conscription Laws

The following is a guest post by James Martin, Senior Legal Information Analyst at the Law Library of Congress. If it can be said that necessity is the mother of invention, then it can also be said that war is quite often its midwife.  This was certainly the case in the American Civil War when […]

The Electoral College – What Is It and How Does It Function?

The following is a guest post by Barbara Bavis and Robert Brammer, both legal reference librarians in the Public Services Division of the Law Library of Congress. The 2012 Presidential election is projected to be close, and attention has turned to whether the Electoral College may diverge from the popular vote in shaping the outcome […]

A Congress.gov Interview with Andy Mendelson, Head of the Legislative Analysis and Information Section

The following is a guest post by Kimberly Ferguson, Specialist in Legislative Information Systems Management in the Library of Congress.  Kimberly previous blogged about “Bills To Be Considered on the House Floor” Repository for In Custodia Legis. This week’s interview is with Andy Mendelson, a manager of legislative information at the Congressional Research Service (CRS). Andy’s contributions to Congress.gov […]

A Congress.gov Interview with Valerie Heitshusen, Analyst on Congress and the Legislative Process

The following is a guest post by Kimberly Ferguson, Specialist in Legislative Information Systems Management in the Library of Congress.  Kimberly previously blogged about “Bills To Be Considered on the House Floor” Repository for In Custodia Legis. This week’s interview is with Val Heitshusen, a legislative process expert and educator in the Congressional Research Service (CRS). Val’s contributions to […]

A Congress.gov Interview with Rohit Gupta, Systems Architect

This week’s interview is with Rohit Gupta, a Systems Architect within the Office of Strategic Initiatives (OSI) Web Services.  Rohit joins Meg, Rich, and Barry in our series of Congress.gov interviews designed to highlight the people who have contributed to the new system. Describe your background. I grew up in Bombay, India and moved to the […]

Being Well-informed: Congress.gov Training

This is a guest post by Judy Graves, Digital Projects Coordinator, Digital Reference Section and instructor, Introducing loc.gov, the monthly webinar series and Pamela Barnes Craig, Instruction/Reference Librarian. “Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government. . . .” Thomas Jefferson to Richard Price, Jan. 8, 1789 Believing wholeheartedly that […]

The First Iterative Update to Congress.gov

The three weeks since we introduced Congress.gov have flown by.  In my initial post on the new system, I mentioned that we will continue to enhance Congress.gov.  The first set of enhancements has gone live.  Jeanine has updated the About Congress.gov page to include: October 2012 Minor updates were made to the system that included: a […]