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Bowdoin College Library

United States Congress, Gov 2010, Spring 2016: Home

Finding primary sources for Paper 2

Primary Sources

in general, start with key sources for your time period

Find background and analysis of a bill or issue Congressional Documents > Reference.
CQ Almanac (a secondary source) is a good place to start. Often including references to hearings, reports, debate, voting, but also executive branch perspective.
Presidential papers Presidential Documents > Other Public Docs.
American Presidency Project is a good place to start.
Finding legislation and histories of bills and laws, including references to hearings, reports, debate, voting Congressional Documents guide > Bills&Resolutions or Bill Histories., which often links to full-text, is a good place to start.

Transcripts of congressional hearings

Congressional Documents guide > Committee Hearings&Prints.

Reports produced by congressional committees

Congressional Documents guide > Cong. Reports&Documents.

Speeches given on the floor of the House or Senate

Congressional Documents guide > Cong.Debate.

Voting data collected by any of a number of different sources

Congressional Documents guide > Floor Votes.
Sources that are particularly easy to use for the given congresses/years are in red.

Citing your sources

Use one of our guides for citations. Starting at the library's front page, choose "Citing Sources" and then scroll down to "Chicago". You may find "Chicago Quick Guide for Government Documents" particularly helpful. If you are citing a document that is online, be sure to include the URL as recommended under "Online documents" in that guide.


Barbara Levergood's picture
Barbara Levergood
Bowdoin College
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