Schmid Law Library Facts & Features: The Basement Collections

In Read This on November 17, 2014 at 8:17 pm

Don’t know what’s in the library’s lower level? This little article will enlighten you. By Brian Striman, Head of Technical Services

  • 15 years ago the library had no “lower level” to go to for studying, or for any books that were available for your use. During our renovation in 2000 we punched two huge “holes” in the center of the library, connected by a huge staircase. The lower level use to be large ventilation shafts, pipes of all kinds and had areas where we stored all kinds of stuff. Now, it’s a great place to study because it’s away from the regular traffic noises that occur between classes.
  • It has other functions that serve the library well, however. It’s where the library houses all its microforms, which are mainly government documents (federal and Nebraska), and there are some state session law microfiche as well. Most of the time when you have a need to use the microfiche or microforms, see the librarian on reference for assistance.
  • On the south side of the lower level shelving, the library keeps it’s print collection of federal government resources (the previous library column discussed those), with the main large runs of the Congressional Record, the Code of Federal Regulations, and the Federal Register. We also have an historical tax collection on the south side shelves.
  • On the north side are old state session laws, superseded state statute volumes, and a collection of older (older than 1975 generally) law books that are classified using an outdated classification scheme called “Bassett”, named after Elsie Bassett from 1937 about “Law Cataloging.” In it she explains her modification of the “Schiller System” developed at Columbia University Law Library. Sometime when you get a few minutes, it’s fun to slowly walk down those shelves to see all the older law publications. The library is reclassifying those historical materials.
  • This area is also one of the law college’s severe weather sheltering areas (in case of tornado).library basement

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