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Meet the Clerk
Learn About Congress
How Laws are Made
Inspect A Law
Researching Legislation
Time Traveler
Field Trip!
  How Laws Are Made

Inspect-A-Law: Federal Holidays

In this section, you will learn:

checkmark How Congress keeps records of its proceedings

checkmark The difference between the Journal of the House and the Congressional Record

checkmark How to read the real Congressional records using the Federal Holiday laws as an example

checkmark Where to find House records on-line

Let's discover the history of Federal Holidays graphic

Throughout the history of the Congress, Members have introduced legislation to benefit their constituents, the states they represent, and the nation. These public and private laws protect the rights of all the nation's citizens, create revenue to fund government services, and maintain the United States' standing in the world.

The records kept by Congress provide the clues that we need to learn about laws and history. These records are primary sources— They were created by people who actually saw or participated in the event. Primary sources can be things like letters, photographs, and articles of clothing. In the case of researching legislation, however, we usually mean a statement of the law from a governmental entity, such as a court, legislature, executive agency, President or Governor.

You'll be able to help A. Bill with his investigation by examining these 5 clues using primary sources:

bullet The Constitution

bullet The House Journal

bullet The Congressional Record

bullet Bills & Resolutions

bullet Put it All Together



Parents & Teachers
Tools for Learning

Did You Know?
A Little Known Fact
High-school-aged Congressional Pages deliver important messages to Members in the House Chamber.

Check This Out!
Currently on the House Floor
History is being made right now on the House Floor!

Glossary Terms
Key Words
Use the glossary to learn key terms.

Checks and Balances
Clean Bill
Committee of the Whole
Concurrent Resolution
Electronic Voting Machine
Engrossed Bill
Enrolled Bill
Joint Resolution
Legislative Day
Line-Item Veto
Override (a veto)
Pocket Veto
Private Bill
Public Law
Simple Resolution
Sine Die
Tabling Motion

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