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Introducing the Law Library of Congress Legal Research Institute

In celebration of the 220th birthday of the Library of Congress, the Law Library of Congress is proud to announce a new offering on Law.gov designed to more quickly and easily connect patrons to our educational presentations and resources—the Law Library of Congress Legal Research Institute. On the Legal Research Institute homepage, users will see resources divided into four options: U.S. Law Webinars; Foreign, Comparative, and International Law Webinars; Onsite Classes; and Online Resources.

Law Library of Congress Legal Research Institute Homepage

Law Library of Congress Legal Research Institute Homepage

The U.S. Law Webinars section provides information about all of the webinars touching on U.S. domestic law, including the Congress.gov Webinar and the Orientation to Legal Research Webinar Series. The Orientation to Legal Research Webinar Series provides a basic introduction to U.S. federal legal sources and research techniques, currently focusing on U.S. case law research, U.S. statutory and legislative research, and U.S. regulations. The Legal Research Institute page provides registration information for these one-hour online orientations, taught by legal reference librarians at the Law Library of Congress, which are offered once a month on a rotating basis. In addition, patrons can use the Legal Research Institute page to register for the bi-monthly Congress.gov Webinar, which offers an overview of Congress.gov, the official website for U.S. federal legislative information.

The focus of the Foreign, Comparative, and International Law Webinars section as of now is the Foreign and Comparative Law Webinar Series of classes, which is designed to highlight some of the foreign, comparative, and international law issues researched by the foreign law experts at the Law Library of Congress, including legislative frameworks for fighting pandemics, the recent Israeli elections, and perspectives on Brexit.

Another key feature of the Legal Research Institute is the Archived Webinars page. Law Library of Congress staff are working to convert recordings of prior webinars to video format, with closed captions, so that they can ultimately be viewed on this page. The first archived webinar included is the “How (and Why) to Transcribe Herencia” presentation related to the virtual Herencia Transcribe-a-thon.  Keep an eye on this page for future webinar uploads.

Even though Library events are currently postponed or cancelled until July 1, 2020, as soon as in-person classes are available, patrons can learn more about these presentations and register for them using the Onsite Classes page. If you are unable to attend one of our in-person or webinar trainings, we also offer links to helpful legal research information, including Law Library of Congress research guides, digitized legal collections, and legal research reports, via our Online Resources page.

As always, each Legal Research Institute page will include a link at the top of the screen to our Ask a Librarian service, where you are welcome to contact us if you have any research questions, even if Library of Congress buildings are closed. Please don’t hesitate to connect with us!

Teddy Roosevelt, Naturalist and Public Intellectual

The following is a guest post by Alexander Salopek, a collection development specialist in Collection Services Division. While at home due to the current circumstances, I have found myself deeply missing the Library’s collections; something close to my heart. Thankfully, I was able to work with the collections through the By the People project. By […]

England Enacts Law Prohibiting the Early Release of Terrorists

The following is a guest post by Clare Feikert-Ahalt, a senior foreign law specialist at the Law Library of Congress covering the United Kingdom and several other jurisdictions. Clare has written a number of posts for In Custodia Legis, including Weird Laws, or Urban Legends?; FALQs: Brexit Referendum; and The UK’s Legal Response to the London […]

From the Serial Set: “Memorials” and an International Copyright Law?

The following is a guest post by Bailey DeSimone, a library technician (metadata) in the Digital Resources Division of the Law Library of Congress. “Memorials,” or requests “that the Congress take some action, or refrain from taking certain action,” are housed throughout the United States Congressional Serial Set. These documents provide insight into the communication between citizens – […]

New Shelving Evokes Old Memories

We are now two-thirds through having the Law Library’s shelving replaced in the second of four quadrants in our closed stacks. The new shelving is lighter, easier to move and conforms to current safety standards for spacing between shelves. And it’s making shelving and retrieval much easier for staff and contractors. As I walked through […]

General James Wilkinson, the Spanish Spy Who was a Senior Officer in the U.S. Army During Four Presidential Administrations

To celebrate National Library Week during this time of social distancing, we encourage you to explore the collections of the Library of Congress online. One of the great things about exploring the collections of the Library of Congress is its ability to surprise you. In that spirit, I wanted to share something I came across […]

An Interview with Kit Arrington, Supervisory Program Specialist, Digital Resources Division

Today’s interview is with Kit Arrington, Supervisory Program Specialist (on detail) in the Digital Resources Division of the Law Library of Congress. Describe your background. I embrace Washington, DC as home having made my life here for almost 30 years, including raising two daughters who are both home now finishing their spring college semesters online. Growing up […]