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U.S. Congressional Serial Set

With more than 15,000 volumes published, the U.S. Congressional Serial Set is a comprehensive look at how America evolved through the eyes of Congress.

Other Sources for the Serial Set

Other Online (miscellaneous dates)

  • Current Congressional documents - available through GovInfo from the Government Publishing Office.
  • MBooks Online (Full Text) - The University of Michigan provides open access to some full text publications through links in their library catalog, but access to many of the items is restricted to faculty, staff, and students at the University of Michigan.  Many of these titles are available on Google Docs or in HathiTrust
  • U.S. Serial Set available from through the American Memory Project (Library of Congress) - 23rd to the 64th Congress.
  • Serial Set Inventory is made available from the University of North Texas Libraries.  This inventory " aims to be a complete inventory of serial set holdings in U.S. libraries, from volume 1 through volume 13219-3.  Libraries are encouraged to add their serial set inventories to the site.  Researchers will be able to search and browse the inventories by serial set volume, by library, or by session of Congress."

Helpful tools to understand what you are looking at

History of the U.S. Congressional Serial Set publication from Virginia Saunders, U.S. Government Printing Office. Ms. Saunders was the expert within the GPO on all things related to the Serial Set.

An Overview of the U.S. Congressional Serial Set by Rick McKinney.  From the Law Librarians' Society of Washington, this document provides a general overview of the kinds of materials comprising the Serial Set, how the set is numbered, the documents work together and indexed, etc.

ProQuest Guides are available to explain how to search this Vendor's database, tips for searching, as well as more detailed explanations regarding their set.  ProQuest sales person Andrea Sevetson edited a book about the Serial Set which is a very good source for additional reading.  It is available through Summit and is entitled The Serial Set: It's Makeup and Content.

There is a lot of abbreviations and acronyms used in the U.S. Government.  Some of the most common used in the Serial Set are:





Bill originating in the Senate

S. 1


Bill originating in the House

H.R. 1


Simple resolution originating in the Senate

S.Res. 2


Simple resolution originating in the House

H.Res. 2


Joint resolution originating in the Senate

S.J. Res.3


Joint resolution originating in the House

H.J. Res.3


Concurrent resolution originating in the Senate



Concurrent resolution originating in the House



Executive Document from the Senate

S.Exec.Doc 5


Executive Document from the House

H.Exec.Doc 5


Miscellaneous Document from the Senate

S.Misc.Doc 6


Miscellaneous Document from the House

H.Misc.Doc 6


Public law



United States Statues at Large

131 Stat.1218


U.S. Code

United States Code is the codification of the statutes by subject

42 USC 280



Report issued by a Senate committee, usually to accompany legislation that has passed in committee




Report issued by a House or conference committee




For additional information, please see the basic legal citation from the Legal Information Institute, Cornell School of Law.

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