New Resources in December 2018

The Pritzker Legal Research Center added over 160 new items to our collection in December 2018. Check out what we’ve added on our New Books List.

Posted in Library Resources

Food for Fines

Food for FinesBetween Nov. 19 and Dec. 21, Northwestern University Libraries will be hosting our annual food drive.  Overdue library fines will be reduced by $5 for every food item donated. Nutritious, ready-to-eat food preferred. We cannot accept open packages, homemade items, perishable foods, expired items, beverages, or glass containers.

Food will be donated to Northwestern’s Purple Pantry and the Howard Area Community Center. See the Circulation Desk  for additional details.


Posted in Uncategorized

Resource Spotlight: American Civil Liberties Union Papers, 1912-1990


Gale’s American Civil Liberties Union Papers, 1912-1990 is a digital library containing more than 2 million pages of records, including bills, briefs, correspondence, court documents, legal case files, memorandums, etc.. It covers numerous topics, including the first “Red Scare” following the Russian Revolution of 1917; labor organizing; debates in the 1920s on immigration; the American Birth Control League; lynchings in the 1930s; debates on aliens and immigrants in the years immediately preceding the U.S. entry into the Second World War; and the ACLU’s involvement in Vietnam War issues and the Civil Rights movement.

Posted in Library Resources, Resource Spotlight

Fall Exhibit: Clarence Darrow

For Alumni Weekend, the PLRC debuted its fall exhibit, Clarence Darrow: Selections from the Arnold Greenberg Clarence Darrow Collection. Featuring photographs, rare books, correspondence, and others materials, the exhibit presents snippets of Darrow’s life, from his relationships with his wife and son to his work on the Scopes Trial in Tennessee.

The Arnold Greenberg Clarence Darrow Collection is the gift of the family of the late Arnold Greenberg, an antiquarian bookseller and lifelong admirer of Darrow. His son, Mike Greenberg (of ESPN’s Mike & Mike and Get Up!), is a Northwestern University alumnus who, along with his mother, generously offered the collection to the Law School.

Clarence Darrow: Selections from the Arnold Greenberg Clarence Darrow Collection will be on display on the third floor of the PLRC until early March 2019. To see additional items from the collection, please contact

Posted in Uncategorized

New Resources in October 2018

autumn autumn colours autumn leaves beautiful

The Pritzker Legal Research Center added over 200 new items to our collection in October 2018. Check out what we’ve added on our New Books List.

Posted in Library Resources

Resource Spotlight: Locating & Using 50-State Surveys

A 50-state survey is a specialized secondary source that compares laws on a particular topic across all 50 states.  They might be as lengthy as a book treatment or as slim as a list of states with simple citations to relevant cases, statutes, or regulations.


One way to find multistate surveys is to simply search for the strings “50 state survey” or “fifty state survey” or “state by state survey.”  Some book- and article-length surveys can be found this way through NUsearch (for example, here).

In addition, both Lexis Advance and Westlaw have databases of 50-state surveys.


Bloomberg Law includes what they term “State Law Chart Builders.” These cover dozens of discrete topics within six broader areas of law. The created chart can then be downloaded as an Excel spreadsheet.

On Cheetah, users can find “smart charts” for various topics of law by clicking on a practice area on the home page and then looking to the “practice tools” section for that topic in the upper right of the page for that topic.  These charts can be downloaded as an Excel spreadsheet or as a Word document.


The Subject Compilations of State Laws is a biennial publication that dates back to 1960.  Available on HeinOnline, it indexes articles, briefs, books, government reports, and other sources that provide surveys of state laws.

Articles & ALRs

If all of the above fail, you can try to find surveys in law review articles or in annotations in American Law Reports.


Finally, back in 2014, I wrote a column for the Illinois Bar Journal on finding 50-state surveys when one doesn’t have access to databases like Lexis and Westlaw.  You can read that column (on Westlaw) here, or find it in print at Tom Gaylord, Fifty-State Surveys: Can They Be Had for Free, 102 Ill. B.J. 352 (2014).

Posted in Resource Spotlight

Resource Spotlight: International Encyclopaedia of Laws

Screenshot of International Encyclopaedia of Laws for Constitutional Law

Are you interested in foreign and international law and searching for an authoritative, peer-reviewed resource?  If so, consider using International Encyclopaedia of Laws, one of the many online resources available through the Pritzker Legal Research Center.

International Encyclopaedia of Laws is actually an umbrella title for several distinct, subject-specific resources, covering disciplines including civil procedure, contracts, constitutional law, criminal law, family law, and intellectual property.  Importantly, the title “Encyclopaedia” is somewhat of a misnomer, as these resources are far from general. Instead, each contains extensive, heavily-footnoted chapters devoted to the laws of specific countries, written by experts in the respective fields.  For a more-detailed description of content, as well as a look the editorship structure and publication guidelines, visit

To access International Encyclopaedia of Laws here at Northwestern, you may visit the Law Library’s listing of databases beginning with “I” or may follow one of these direct links:

IEL: Civil Procedure
IEL: Commercial and Economic Law
IEL: Constitutional Law
IEL: Contracts
IEL: Corporations and Partnerships
IEL: Criminal Law
IEL: Family and Succession Law
IEL: Intellectual Property
IEL: Labour Law and Industrial Relations
IEL: Private International Law

Posted in Resource Spotlight

New Resources in September 2018

pile of five books

The Pritzker Legal Research Center added over 270 new items to our collection in September 2018. Check out what we’ve added on our New Books List.

Posted in Library Resources

Resource Spotlight: Leadership Connect

YellowBooksThis month’s featured resource is the Leadership Connect database. It was previously known as Leadership Library and many of you may be familiar with it by the nickname given to its print counterpart, the Yellow Books.  The directories in Leadership Connect contain detailed contact information—including emails and direct-dials for individuals working in federal, state and local governments, companies, news media, law and lobbying firms, professional associations and nonprofits.

The law firm directories include 82,000 individuals in leadership roles including managing partners, practice heads, judges, and law clerks.  The database allows you to search across law firm headquarters, branch offices, committees, and practice groups. You can also filter by attorney specialty, practice area, firm size, or location and view contact details and biography information.Leadership_Connect_-Attorneys by specialty

The Congressional directory includes entries for representatives, chiefs of staff, legislative directors, legislative assistants, schedulers. The media directory includes 60,000 media contacts for editors, reporters, producers, guest bookers, columnists, bloggers and online journalists, researchers, hosts, and senior management.  You are able to view listings for reporters broken out by bureaus/desks, with full contact info and social media accounts.

Posted in Resource Spotlight

New Resources in July 2018

multicolored sail boat on shore overlooking sea under daytime skyThe Pritzker Legal Research Center added over 250 new items to our collection in July 2018. Check out what we’ve added on our New Books List.

Posted in Library Resources