As a legal historian, I’m a big fan of Hein’s Session Law Library which contains the session laws of all 50 U.S. states as well as Canada, Australia, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, and the D.C. Register. All states are current within 60 days of the printed publication, and all states are available back to inception.  This database was instrumental to my research on sex trafficking in Wisconsin in the late 19th century.

The availability of this database was a huge improvement over accessing this legislation in print.  But, until now, finding pre-2000 session laws by chapter or act number was still rather clunky because they were not indexed.  You’d have to randomly page forward and back until you found the page with the session law you were looking for.

Fortunately, locating state session laws by chapter or act number just got easier because Hein has completed indexing Wisconsin session laws back to inception – not just statehood in 1848, but all the way back to the Territory of Wisconsin in 1836.

Session Laws quick search

To quickly retrieve a chapter, act, or page, use the Session Laws Quick Locator tool found either on the Session Laws Library homepage or within a particular state. Simply select the state and plug in the year and chapter/act information to retrieve the document.

Wisconsin joins a number of other states with completely indexed session laws.  Eventually, Hein will index all states to inception.