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Law Journals

Locating Historical Materials

Collecting older versions of books, legislative materials, regulations, and court documents articles can pose a challenge. The resources below offer some ways to locate historical materials, but you may need to get creative with your searches. As always, contact a reference librarian if you get stuck. 


If your source is an older edition of a book, do your best to locate the edition the author cited. If the source is particularly challenging to find or is simply no longer available, communicate with your editors. 

Legislative and Administrative Materials

In addition to the annotated codes available on Lexis and Westlaw, you have access to several databases that have legislative and regulatory history materials and older versions of codes: 

The library also holds some older editions of federal and California codes and regulations. Please search the catalog. If the materials you are looking for are held in microfilm form, please see a reference librarian for assistance. 

For additional guidance and tips for locating these materials, see the following guides: 


Court Documents

Some documents associated with cases (e.g. briefs, motions etc.) are readily available on both Lexis and Westlaw. You also have access to dockets through Bloomberg. Access to case and court documents, especially for older cases, varies. 

If you are unable to locate the documents you need, you may need to reach out to the court or an associated archive.