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Federal Documents

Core U.S. Documents

Judicial Branch [courts]

Executive Branch [agencies, budget...]

Tax Information [federal and state]

Legislative Branch [bills, laws, Congress...]

Other/Additional Government Resources

Military Science

 

Core Documents of U.S. Democracy and Government

Articles of Confederation

Emancipation Proclamation

The Bill of Rights

The Federalist Papers

The Constitution of the United States

The Gettysburg Address

The Declaration of Independence

More Core Documents and Resources from the Government Printing Office

100 Milestone Documents
Contains digitized images of 100 milestone documents, compiled by the National Archives and Records Administration, and drawn primarily from its nationwide holdings. The documents chronicle United States history from 1776 to 1965.  Besides offering such founding documents as the Articles of Confederation and The Declaration of Independence, the site also includes the Treaty of Paris, The Marshall Plan, the Voting Rights Act, several notable Supreme Court Cases (Dred Scott v. Sanford, Gibbons v. Ogden , etc.) and more.

American Memory (Library of Congress)
A major component of the Library's National Digital Library Program, American Memory contains multimedia collections of digitized documents, photographs, recorded sound, moving pictures, and text relating to the history and culture of the United States. The site offers more than 9 million digital items from more than 100 historical collections.

Executive Branch [back to top]

U.S. Federal Agency Directory
Louisiana State University 's page that links to all federal agencies (executive, judicial, and legislative branches), including boards, commissions and committees; independent agencies (e.g. CIA); and quasi official agencies (e.g. Smithsonian). Access is via a hierarchical arrangement (e.g. Main agency -- subagency) or alphabetical.

Budget of the United States Government
Budgets online from 1996 to the present.  Downloadable as a single document or by individual sections. Many of the tables are downloadable as Excel spreadsheets.  Full text searching of the budget is available. Also available in the library in hardcopy and CD ROM beginning with the call number PREX 2.8: back to 1961.

U.S. Government Manual
As the official handbook of the Federal Government, the United States Government Manual provides comprehensive information on the agencies of the legislative, judicial, and executive branches. It also includes information on quasi-official agencies, international organizations in which the United States participates, and boards, commissions, and committees. Updated yearly. Also available at the Reference Desk in hardcopy. JK 421 .A3

The Plum Book (United States Government Policy and Supporting Positions).
Published alternately after each Presidential election, the Plum Book lists over 7,000 Federal civil service leadership and support positions in the legislative and executive branches of the Federal Government that may be subject to noncompetitive appointment, nationwide. Data covers positions such as agency heads and their immediate subordinates, policy executives and advisors, and aides who report to these officials. The duties of many such positions may involve advocacy of Administration policies and programs and the incumbents usually have a close and confidential working relationship with the agency or other key officials. Online beginning with 1996.

The White House
Besides information about the President, current issues are covered here as well as news, speeches, executive orders and proclamations. Dropdown menus from that "blue bar" contain more links to resources. Archived Clinton White House websites can be found here, while those of George W. Bush can be found here.

Legislative [back to top]

Congress.gov
Provided by the Library of Congress, this resource offers access to legislative information including bills, public laws, the Congressional Record, House and Senate Committee reports, proposed legislation, roll call votes, treaties, histories, and much more. Some information dates from the 93rd Congress (1973-74) onwards. Legislative histories going back to 1952 can be found in the U.S. Code Congressional and Administration News (latest in reference, older in stacks) KF 63 .U53. The Congressional Record can also shed light on the history of a bill, although not in as much detail.

Other bill tracking websites: Govtrack and OpenCongress.org.

Federal Digital System (FDSys) search.
The growing system of record from the GPO that contains the following full-text publications:
Budget of the United States Government (Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011)
Code of Federal Regulations (2004 to 2010)
Compilation of Presidential Documents (1993 to Present)
Commerce Business Daily Bulk Data (1996 to 2001)
Congressional Bills (103rd Congress to Present)
Congressional Calendars (104th Congress to Present)
Congressional Committee Prints (105th Congress to Present)
Congressional Directory (105th Congress to Present)
Congressional Documents (104th Congress to Present)
Congressional Hearings (105th Congress to Present)
Congressional Pictorial Directory (105th to 111th Congress)
Congressional Record (Bound) (1999 to 2001)
Congressional Record (Daily) (1994 to Present)
Congressional Record Index (Daily) (1983 to Present)
Congressional Reports (104th Congress to Present)
Constitution of the United States: Analysis and Interpretation (1992 to 2008)
Economic Indicators (1995 to Present)
Economic Report of the President (1995 to Present)
Federal Register (1994 to Present) Also try the Federal Register 2.0: a better search interface.
GAO Reports and Comptroller General Decisions (1994 to 2008)
House Practice (104th and 108th Congress)
House Rules and Manual (104th to 111th Congresses)
History of Bills (1983 to Present)
List of CFR Sections Affected (1997 to Present)
Precedents of the U.S. House of Representatives (Cannon, Deschler, and Hinds)
Public and Private Laws (104th Congress to Present)
Public Papers of the Presidents of the United States (1991 to 2005)
Senate Manual (104th, 106th, 107th, and 110th Congresses)
Supreme Court Decisions 1937-1975 (FLITE) Bulk Data (1937 to 1975)
United States Government Manual (1995 to Present)
United States Government Policy and Supporting Positions--the Plum Book (1996 to 2008)
United States Code (2006 to 2008)
United States Statutes at Large (2003 to 2006)

Regulations.gov.
This website, which began in 2002, allows you to find, view, and comment on regulations for all Federal agencies. In December 2007 it was revamped. And from the government side, a similar site: Reginfo.gov. The public can use this site to search the the Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions and Regulatory Plan, as well as current and past Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) regulatory reviews. The White House Office of Managament and Budget has a webpage with more information regarding regulatory matters. A non-government site that is similar and arguably easier to is OpenRegs.com.

Federal & State Legislation Links
From LLRX.com, a large collection of links related to state and federal legislative resources including news services, pertinent blogs, and advocacy and media groups.

Law Librarian's Society of Washington, D.C.
Webpage with legislative resources including the publications Drafting Federal Law, and A Research Guide to the Federal Register and the Code of Federal Regulations, as well as additional links to regulatory information.

Earmarks database from Legistorm.

Michigan's U.S. Representatives [See also State of Michigan representatives]

Dan Benishek (R)
House representative for the 1st Congressional District.

Carl Levin (D)
Senate representative. 

Debbie Stabenow (D)
Senate representative

Directory of the U.S. House of Representatives
Locate House representatives in Michigan or other states. The Sunlight Foundation has a House Staff Directory.

Directory of U.S. Senate Representatives
Locate Senate representatives in Michigan and other states.

Judicial Branch  [back to top]

Supreme Court of the United States
The official site for the U.S. Supreme Court.  Included on the site are transcripts of oral arguments made from the 2000 term to present, court rules, opinions (from 2000 to present), slip opinions, speeches given by Justices, year end reports, etc. Findlaw offers a searchable database of all Supreme Court decisions since 1893. Print version of Supreme Court decisions can be found on the third floor in the Supreme Court Reporter vols. 1-94 (1882-1973) KF 101 S9 and United States Reports v. 389- (1967-present) KF 101 A3.

U.S. Courts
Links to the official sites for the Courts of Appeal, District Courts, and other specialty courts (e.g. Tax Court, U.S. Court of International Trade, etc.). Many of court sites will include written opinions, although the dates of coverage vary with each web site. Also provided is a link to a library of various publications, statistical reports, and official forms relating to the court system. Michigan is in the 6th District Court; Wisconsin is in the 7th District Court.

OYEZ
"The OYEZ Project is a multimedia archive devoted to the Supreme Court of the United States and its work. It aims to be a complete and authoritative source for all audio recorded in the Court since the installation of a recording system in October 1955. The Project also provides authoritative information on all justices and offers a virtual reality 'tour' of portions of the Supreme Court building, including the chambers of some of the justices."

Other Resources  [back to top]

USAGov
”The U.S. Government's Official Web Portal”. On USAGov.gov, you can search more than 186 million web pages from federal and state governments, the District of Columbia, U.S. territories, and local governments. Most of these pages are not available on commercial websites. USAGov has the most comprehensive search of government anywhere on the Internet. In addition, USAGov.gov allows you to browse sites by topic and has a very handy A-Z agency list. Includes government domains other than .gov and .mil as well.

Search across up to 53 government agencies with MetaLib.
Collections include Environment, Science & Technology, Agriculture, Recreation, Travel & Transportation, and Business & Economy. You can also narrow your search to specific resources within each topic.

Catalog of Government Publications
Updated daily. Search this resource for online publications.

Homeland Security Digital Library .
The nation's premier collection of homeland security policy and strategy related documents from federal, state, and local governments. This database is available for NMU students and faculty.

FedWorld
Yet another access point to government information and publications, FedWorld was established in 1992 by the National Technical Information Service (NTIS) to serve as the online locator for information disseminated by the Federal Government. You can limit your searching to such things as government R&D reports, science & tech sites, as well as IRS forms.

University of Michigan's Document Center
This site offers a browseable index to a wide range of governmental information and topics.  Headings exist for specific topics, e.g. abortion, and broad levels of government (federal, executive branch, etc.). All levels of government--international, federal, and local--are represented. This is a very good resource; can't duplicate it, so I'll point you to it.

Citing Government Documents
Collection of links and samples from the University of Nebraska.

Additional Federal Government Resources

There are several entities that collect information obtained from the U.S. Government produced outside of the Government Printing Office. In particular, the National Security Archive (which collects and displays documents obtained via the Freedom of Information Act [FOIA]), and The Memory Hole, which has managed to capture online documents that have been removed and web images that have been changed. A November 2004 article in Wired (by Ryan Singel) highlighted several alternate sources of government information. Here are a few of them.

Open CRS Network
"American taxpayers spend nearly $100 million a year to fund the Congressional Research Service, a "think tank" that provides reports to members of Congress on a variety of topics relevant to current political events" but are not distributed through the GPO. The University of North Texas has collected CRS reports as well. For a longer list of other sites that host these reports, go to the Law Librarians' Society of Washington, D.C.

The National Security Archive
From George Washington University. Briefly, this is a physical and online collection of declassified U.S. documents that have been obtained by a variety of individuals and organizations through the Freedom of Information Act (FIOA).

Project on Government Secrecy
From the Federation of American Scientists, the Project on Government Secrecy works to "challenge excessive government secrecy and to promote public oversight”.

Policy Agendas Project
This website is an ambitious attempt to provide truly comparable measures of policy changes in the United States since the Second World War. From the website "Modern information technology allows users of this website to trace, graph and download policy changes in many different arenas at the click of a mouse. By providing direct information on the sources of our measures of policy changes, this website also allows users to access the original material, which provides the historical context of policy choice."

Sunlight Foundation
Making government transparent and accountable. Covering (and makeing understandable) stories such as earmarks, court cases, lobbying, legislative issues, etc. Website has a search feature.

OMB Watch
SImilar to the Sunlight Foundation in their desire to make government accountable and transparent to citizens.

Project on Government Oversight
The Project On Government Oversight (founded in 1981) is a nonpartisan independent watchdog that champions good government reforms. POGO’s investigations into corruption, misconduct, and conflicts of interest achieve a more effective, accountable, open, and ethical federal government.

Wikileaks, which releases large amounts of classified material.

Public.Resource.org

The Government Attic.
"Provides electronic copies of hundreds of interesting Federal Government documents obtained under the Freedom of Information Act." Military, FBI, Congress, National Secutiry Agency, CIA: a mixed bag. Searchable. There is a lot at this site.

Questions? Contact Bruce Sarjeant, Reference, Documents & Maps Librarian (227-1580).



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