Legislative Documents Plus

From 1820 to 1829, legislative documents were published in their entirety in the Journal of either house (see Legislative Journals, below). The most important component of our historic New York State documents collection is the bound series of collected documents known as the "Legislative series of documents," covering 1830 through 1976. These series include not only legislative documents but also some publications of the executive and judicial branches.

Legislative Series of Documents

Similar documents following this set were received and cataloged individually either as serials or monographs; search the Cornell Library Catalog for individual titles. Cornell has some documents which are included in the collected series cataloged separately as well.

Indexes to Legislative Series of Documents

Olin Reference has print guides to the Legislative Series of Documents which are invaluable for locating individual documents in these large sets.

Legislative Journals

"Journals of the New York State Assembly and Senate have been published since 1777. The text of a journal consists of summaries of floor proceedings, some resolutions, and some bill amendments introduced by the opposite house. The text of the bills themselves is never included." [Butch, 32] These journals are listed in the Cornell Library Catalog; search "new york state legislature assembly" AND journal. For the Senate version, substitute senate for assembly. The Journals are an important resource for establishing legislative intent.

Legislation: Assembly and Senate Bills

Executive Documents: The Governor

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Michael Engle
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New York State Historical Literature Collection

The New York State Historical Literature collection contains electronic versions of scattered 19th century NYS documents among its 655 browseable and searchable online titles scanned and indexed by CUL. Browsing the titles beginning with "New York State" is one way to see what's available here.

Subject Indexes to Legislative Journals

There are no subject indexes to the Journal, per se. However, the New York Times Index (1851 to date) and Historical Index to the New York Times [online] (1863-1905, 1913-September 1922) can serve as a surrogate subject indexes. Legislative proceedings are often discussed in the newspaper.

For More Information

For detailed information on historic New York state documents, consult
Butch, Dorothy. New York State Documents: An Introductory Manual. Albany: University of the State of New York, State Education Dept..., 1987.
(New York State Library Bibliography Bulletin 89). (Olin Ref Z 1223.5 .N7 .B97 + Also ILR, Law Reference, Annex, Mann, Uris).