This is a guest post by Anne Guha, legal information analyst with the Law Library Public Services Division.
As Margaret explained in a previous blog post, recently we have been preparing the Law Library Reading Room, located in Room 201 in the Madison Building of the Library of Congress, for a much-needed renovation. In order to allow the room to be renovated, our staff is in the process of moving Reading Room collections into a temporary space on the Ground Floor of the Madison Building. This temporary space will be open to the public in mid-October.
Over the next couple of weeks while the move is taking place, there are some items in our Reading Room collection that will be inaccessible until we are settled in the temporary Reading Room. The majority of the Law Library’s collection, which is in closed stacks, is still retrievable and available during this move. This post describes our policies for accessing Reading Room collections as we complete our transition over the next couple of weeks. For questions, clarification, or assistance, please feel free to contact the Law Library Reading Room at (202) 707-5080.
Using the Catalog to Identify Reading Room Items
Before visiting the Law Library Reading Room, we recommend that patrons search for the items they are interested in by using our online catalog. Once you have located the record for an item of interest, click “Where to Request” in the upper right-hand corner or scroll down to examine the shaded “Where to Request” area.
From this area, you will learn which Library of Congress Reading Room services the item (next to “Request in”) and you also will find a list of the copies of that item in our collection, including a call number for each copy. If you are familiar with our catalog, you’ll know that Law Library items with an “RR” at the end of their call numbers are located in the Reading Room, whereas items without an “RR” are, generally-speaking, located in our closed stacks. In Example One, above, you can see that “Copy 1” is located in the Law Library Reading Room because of the “RR” designation in its Call Number, and you can also see that there is an additional copy, “Copy 2”, which is located down in the closed stacks.
Policies for Accessing Reading Room Items During our Move
During our transition, only the Reading Room (“RR”) items that remain in Room 201 at the time of request will be accessible to patrons. For safety and security reasons, the Law Library Reading Room will not be servicing any Reading Room copies that are in the process of being moved or transitioned. For “RR” items having an additional copy in our stacks (as in Example One, above), the additional copies can be ordered through ACS as usual for delivery to Room 201. For “RR” items having only a single Reading Room copy (as in Example Two, below), if these materials have been removed from Room 201 they will not be accessible to the public until our transition into our temporary location on the Ground Floor is complete.
As soon as the temporary Reading Room is cleared for safety and open for business, complete service will resume, and all “RR” items will be retrievable for patrons. If you have interest in an “RR” item in the meantime, we recommend that you call the Law Library Reading Room first at (202) 707-5080 to learn whether that item will be available. We will also provide an update on this blog when our temporary Reading Room opens.
For items that cannot be serviced during our transition, we refer patrons to other local law libraries that may have the materials they need. The following is a selective list of law libraries located in the D.C. metro area which are open to members of the public. Prior to visiting, we recommend that patrons call or review the websites of these libraries to learn their policies, confirm their hours, and see whether the items needed are in their catalogs. A more complete list of local law libraries is provided on the George Mason Law Library website.
Virginia Public Law Libraries
Arlington County Walter T. McCarthy Law Library
1425 N. Courthouse Rd, Suite 1700, Arlington, VA
Hours: Mon – Fri: 8:30 am – 4 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Courthouse (Silver/Orange)
Alexandria Law Library
520 King St., LL34, Alexandria, VA
Hours: Mon-Fri: 9 am-2 pm
Closest Metro Stop: King Street (Blue/Yellow)
Fairfax County Courthouse Public Law Library
4110 Chain Bridge Rd., Suite 115, Fairfax, VA
Hours: Mon & Thurs: 8 am – 7 pm; Tues, Wed & Fri: 8 am – 4:30 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Vienna-Fairfax-GMU (Orange) (4.6 miles away)
Maryland Public Law Libraries
Montgomery County Circuit Court Law Library
50 Maryland Ave, Rm 326, Rockville, MD
Hours: Mon – Fri: 8 am – 5:30 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Rockville (Red)
Prince George’s County Law Library
14735 Main Street, Rm M1400, Upper Marlboro, MD
Hours: 8:30 am – 4:30 pm on regular court days
Anne Arundel County Public Law Library
7 Church Circle, Suite 303, Annapolis, MD
Hours: Mon – Fri: 9 am – 4:30 pm
Academic Law Libraries
Pence Law Library (American University Washington College of Law)
4801 Massachusetts Ave., NW, Washington, DC
Hours: Mon – Fri: 8 am – 8 pm; Sat & Sun: 9 am – 5 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Tenleytown-AU (Red)
Judge Kathryn J. Dufour Law Library (Catholic University of America Columbus School of Law)
3600 John McCormack Rd., NE, Washington DC
Hours: Mon-Thurs: 7:30 am – 11:45 pm; Fri: 7:30 am – 8:45 pm; Sat: 9 am – 8:45pm; Sun: 9 am – 11:45 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Brookland-CUA (Red)
George Mason Law Library (George Mason University School of Law)
3301 N Fairfax Dr., Arlington, VA
Hours: Mon-Thurs: 8 am – 11 pm; Fri: 8 am – 10 pm; Sat: 10 am – 10 pm; Sun: 10 am – 11 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Clarendon (Silver/Orange) or Virginia Square-GMU (Silver/Orange)
Charles N. and Hilda H. M. Mason Law Library (U.D.C. Clarke School of Law)
4200 Connecticut Ave, N.W., Washington, DC
Hours: Mon-Fri: 8 am-11 pm; Sat: 10 am-6 pm; Sun: Noon-8 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Van Ness-UDC (Red)
Howard University Law Library (Howard University Law School)
2929 Van Ness Street, NW, Washington, DC
Hours: Mon – Fri: 7 am – 11 pm; Sat: 9 am – 10 pm; Sun: 11 am – 11 pm
Closest Metro Stop: Van Ness-UDC (Red)