Numbers and Dates of Congressional Sessions
Begin with the resources below to explore documents produced by the legislative branch, or use the tabs above to locate current and historical congressional information, broken out by type of document (bill, hearing, etc.).
Need more information about a senator or representative?
When a bill or resolution is introduced in the House or Senate it is assigned a bill or resolution number, the text is printed, and it is assigned to a committee. Full text of bills and resolutions can be found online:
For bills and resolutions not available online:
If a committee votes favorably on a bill, it is "reported" from that committee to the full House or Senate. The bill is accompanied by an actual report, which explains the purpose of the bill, reviews past Congressional actions on the subject, specifies how the bill changes existing law and its expected effects on the federal budget and the national economy. Reports are identified by Congress and report number. Reports, along with Congressional documents, eventually get compiled into the Serial Set.
How to compile legislative histories:
A legislative history traces the chronology of the legislation and provides citations to the various documents relevant to the bill.
Published legislative histories may be available from:
Not every enacted law has a published legislative history. You may need to compile one yourself, using the resources highlighted in this guide.
See also: Yale Law Library’s Legislative History guide; some of the sources listed will be available to Yale Law School affiliates only. Contact Yale University Library's government documents librarian to find out which sources are available to you.
Statutes at Large
More information about finding laws
Online (Yale only) 1995-presentOnline (public access)
American State Papers
Presidential Signing Statements
Presidential signing statements may accompany either a signed or vetoed bill.
Additional Presidential Information