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Friday, June 24, 2016

Complete Federal Register available online for free

The Law Library of Congress has acquired HeinOnline’s Federal register collection. This collection includes 14,586 issues covering March 14th, 1936 (1 Fed Reg. 1) to December 30th, 1993 (58 Fed Reg. 69169). Combined with the GPO’s collection the entire Federal Register is available for free online.
In addition to the new Law Library of Congress collection the GPO’s own scanning project continues apace.
The Federal Register is a daily publication that is the official source of legal information from the Executive Branch of the United States Government. The Federal Register contains:
  • Federal Agency Regulations
  • Proposed Rules and Public Notices
  • Executive Orders, Presidential Proclamations and other Presidential Documents
If you are interested in researching the history of a federal regulation this blog post on the Law Library of Congress blog In Custodia Legis is an excellent guide.  

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Non-stop Hamilton: On Stage and in the Law

Some of us here at SOLL have been listening to a lot of Hamilton recently – along with the rest of America! In light of the musical’s big night of Tony wins last weekend, we thought some of you might like to delve a little deeper into the life of the ten-dollar founding father. Below are some featured titles from SOLL’s collection that examine Hamilton's relationship with the law. Come visit us at the library and check them out!

HAMILTON: “I practiced the law, I practically perfected it...”

The law practice of Alexander Hamilton : documents and commentary / Julius Goebel, Jr., editor. Associate editors, Francis K. Decker, Jr. ... [et al.]

This five-volume set reproduces Hamilton’s legal papers, accompanied by extensive contextual essays and annotations. “This documentary reconstruction of Hamilton’s professional life has been designed with two ends in view: to establish what his professional capacities were, and to chronicle what his contributions to the growth of the law may have been,” writes editor Julius Goebel, Jr. in the preface. The books are organized by subject, from practice and procedure to criminal cases to real property, with introductory commentary at the beginning of each grouping, followed by the annotated documents.

BURR: “Hamilton, at the Constitutional Convention, there as a New York junior delegate, goes and proposes his open form of government!”

The records of the Federal convention of 1787 / edited by Max Farrand.

A full outline of Hamilton’s plan in the above-reference speech -- which was soundly rejected by the Congress -- is included here. This set of four volumes collected and reprinted all available notes and texts relating to the Convention from a variety of archival sources.

Alexander Hamilton and the Constitution / Clinton Rossiter.

This in-depth study examines Hamilton’s contributions to the United States Constitution, from his work prior to Convention of 1787 to his continuing relevance in its interpretation.

It is interesting to note that author Clinton Rossiter, writing in 1963, points out many of the same themes that Lin-Manuel Miranda emphasizes in his modern-day musical. “Alexander Hamilton is still the least known and most misunderstood major figure in American history, a man in plain if not desperate need of a fresh appraisal,” Rossiter writes in the preface. He goes on to say, “I undertook this study not to celebrate Hamilton but to understand him; I ended with the conviction that to understand him is to celebrate him, if not necessarily to love him.”

HAMILTON: “A series of essays, anonymously published, defending the document of the public…”

The Federalist : a commentary on the Constitution of the United States, being a collection of essays written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison and John Jay in support of the Constitution agreed upon September 17, 1787

The Federalist : a classic on federalism and free government / Gottfried Dietze

Much has been written about the Federalist, also known as the Federalist Papers. This series of 85 essays, authored by Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison, defend the strong central government outlined in the newly-drafted U.S. Constitution, and continue to be cited by the U.S. Supreme Court. Read the essays in full, or check out legal scholar Gottfried Dietze’s 1961 analysis for some historic perspective.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

West KeyRules, a helpful checklist for filing motions.

Filing a motion or pleading in a court can be a daunting task. Keeping track of the timing and rules applicable to your motion can be especially difficult if you are unfamiliar with the particular court.

Westlaw is here to help. West's KeyRules collects all the procedural rules applicable to a large number of state and federal court motions. All the rules, formatting and timing you'll need are right at your fingertips IN EXHAUSTIVE DETAIL! 

Each motion section contains the following sections:
  1. A Checklist
  2. Timing 
  3. General Requirements
  4. Documents
    1. Required Documents
    2. Supplemental Documents
  5. Format
  6. Filing and Service Requirements
  7. Hearings
  8. Forms
  9. Applicable Rules
SOLL has the Oregon KeyRules in print in our refernce section. 

You can also access the KeyRules using Westlaw. Westlaw is available to the public on terminals in our library. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

It's Primary Election Time!

It's primary election time in Oregon.

If you have registered to vote you should have received your primary ballot already. If you have not contact your county elections office right away.

2016 Oregon Primary Election Important Dates
If you have your ballot and are making up your mind you can review the voter pamphlet. You should have received a pamphlet in the mail but if you do not have one you can get them online. 
Once you've filled out the ballot you can mail it or drop it off at a drop box. Use the state drop box locator to find one near to you.

If you have not registered to vote remember you can register for the general election up to October 18th. Since Oregon is now a Motor Voter state you are automatically registered if you have a ID or license through the Oregon DMV. You can check your registration online at any time.

If you are not registered through the Motor Voter law you can register online

You can also register by mail or by visiting your local county elections office

If you are homeless or wish to apply to register without revealing your address you can do so using these instructions

Happy voting fellow Oregonians!

Monday, April 25, 2016

Oregon Appellate Court Oral Arguments -- Week of April 25th

The Oregon Supreme Court will not hear oral arguments the week of April 25th.

The Oregon Court of Appeals will hear oral arguments on April 26th and 28th in the Supreme Court Courtroom.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

New Oregon Public Records Orders Database

The State of Oregon Law Library is excited to unveil a new online database of the Oregon Attorney General’s public records orders.

For those unfamiliar with public records orders, a person who has been denied the right to inspect or receive a copy of a public record of a state agency may submit a petition to the Attorney General. The Attorney General reviews the public record to determine if it may be withheld from public inspection and issues an order responding to the petition. Public records orders are the Attorney General's interpretation of the Oregon Public Records Law, ORS 192.410 to 192.505, as applied to the records being sought.

The new free public tool allows for full-text searching of orders issued 1981-present. The database also gives users advanced searching capabilities to locate statutes based on the petitioner’s name, the agency whose records are being sought, or the date issued. SOLL worked closely with the Oregon Department of Justice to provide online access to these documents.

Visit and explore the new database at:

For more information on Oregon Public Records and Meetings Law, please visit the Department of Justice Web site:

Friday, April 8, 2016

Oregon Reports Extras

Historical legal research is often vital to making a convincing legal argument. A point of law can often turn on a statute or rule that is decades old.

A particularly difficult area of this research is Oregon court rules. If you are lucky enough to well stocked library you may have access back to Merrill's 1981 manual of Oregon Civil procedure. Finding historical Oregon court rules prior to 1981 can be difficult.

The Oregon Reports can help! The official reporter of the Oregon Supreme Court published court rules staring with it's first volume in 1852. You can find Oregon Court rules through 1979 published alongside the court opinions. The Oregon Reports also contains a number of other interesting sets or rules. You can find the US District of Oregon court rules from 1862 and state circuit court rules from 1872.

It has also been the practice of the court to publish memorials to certain persons. Generally the court has included memorials of Justices and Judges of the Oregon appellate courts. There are a few other non-judicial memorials, including a memorial to the long serving State of Oregon Law Librarian Edward N. Gillingham. These memorials are interesting in themselves but also provide insight into the court's history.

I have compiled the work of Mary Bauman, Pat Zollner, Mary Yunker into a spreadsheet that details in what volumes you can find these useful records. Click on the link below to download the spreadsheet.