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WSLL @ Your Service December 2021

Indigenous Peoples Law Research - Carol Hassler

To celebrate Native American Heritage Month in November, we set up a display in the David T. Prosser Jr. Library featuring some of the books from our indigenous law collection. Stop by the library to browse the display through the end of December. Check out our printable research guide and legal topics page for more books, articles and other resources.

Books in display

Dive into primary law to research tribal governments and judicial systems. We link to current constitutions, bylaws, and codes for tribal nations located in Wisconsin on our Indigenous Peoples Law research page, with a special focus on courts. Our print collection includes historical sources for tribal constitutions, charters, and bylaws. Research treaties and federal law, as well as gaming compacts. Tribal codes and judicial opinions can also be researched in databases available in our library, including Westlaw and Lexis Advance.

Expand your research with treatises from our collection. The library has several books relating to the creation of tribal courts, histories of indigenous peoples in Wisconsin, and sources covering federal Indian law. The following are in our current display, and can be checked out at any time.

Indigenous Peoples of the Americas Database

HeinOnline marked Native American Heritage Month with a spotlight on their Indigenous Peoples of the Americas database, which can be accessed in our libraries and remotely with a Wisconsin State Law Library Card. This database features constitutions and bylaws for several tribes for a range of dates, and historical codes from the 1980's. Research related federal laws, legislative histories, and treaties through this database as well. Log into HeinOnline to use this collection, and ask a librarian if you need help.

Learn more and get tips for searching sub-collections from HeinOnline's feature post: Database of the Month: Indigenous Peoples of the Americas.

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Use the Library After Hours

after hours

Would you like the convenience of using the Wisconsin State Law Library later in the evening or on weekends? If so, subscribe now to our After Hours Service. Are you already a subscriber? Now is the time to renew for 2022! Our After Hours service is available to all attorneys licensed to practice in Wisconsin.

A calendar-year subscription includes access to the David T. Prosser Jr. Library from 4:30 p.m. to 10 p.m. Monday through Friday, and 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays, and a key fob for convenient entry into the building.

As an After Hours subscriber:

  • Gain access to the general library collection
  • Use the databases available on our public access computers and wifi
  • Make photocopies and use our free scanner
  • Check out circulating library materials

See our After Hours page for more details, or download a first-time subscription or renewal form now.

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New Books - Kari Zelinka

legal research cover

New Edition! Legal Research: How to Find & Understand the Law, 19th ed. compiled by Nolo Editors, 2021.
Call Number: KF 240 .E35 2021

If you are a new law student, a beginner paralegal, or self-represented, Legal Research: How to Find and Understand the Law is a great tool.  If you aren't well versed in legal terms yet, check out the extensive glossary. There are so many legal sources you might consult, it can be overwhelming to know where to start. Use this book to map out your course, whether you are investigating local ordinances, looking for case law, or preparing a legal memo. Of course, if you get stumped, you can always ask a reference librarian to point you in the right direction!

Chapters include:

  • Understanding the basics of the law
  • Finding legal resources
  • Identifying your legal issue
  • Finding and using secondary sources
  • Finding and using constitutions, statutes, regulations, and ordinances
  • Finding cases
  • Using case law
  • Validating your research
  • Organizing and putting your legal research to use

law of easements cover

New Update! The Law of Easements and Licenses in Land, 2021-2 edition by Jon W. Bruce and others.
Call Number: KF 657 .B78 L25 2021-2

The Law of Easements and Licenses in Land discusses modern day easements and references new case law. Highlights from the latest update include a Georgia case where partial abandonment of an express easement is not recognized. There is also a U.S. Supreme Court case highlighted which ruled that a California access regulation under which agricultural employers were required to allow union organizers onto their property was similar to an easement and constituted a per se physical taking. Don't forget this resource is available in the library if you need to research easements and licenses at some point in your practice.

Contents include:

  • Nature of easements
  • Classification of easements
  • Creation of easements by express provision
  • Creation of easements by implication
  • Creating of easements by prescription
  • Creation of easements by estoppel, custom, public trust, condemnation or equity
  • Transferability of easements
  • Termination of easements
  • Licenses in land
  • The present and future of public law 280

New Titles RSS Feed See our latest New Titles list for a list of new books and other resources.

For assistance in accessing these or other resources, please contact our Reference Desk.

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Tech Tip - Heidi Yelk

New Computer? Wipe and Recycle Your Old Device


Are you hoping for a new phone or computer this holiday season? If so, you may be wondering how to prepare your old device for selling, re-gifting, or recycling. Here are some recent sources to review.

Removing personal data

How to recycle

Protecting Your Privacy if you have a Smart TV

Recent statistics indicate more than 70% of televisions on the market are "Smart TVs." Smart TVs are able to collect data on users. Check out the following articles for ways to reduce data collection and protect your privacy.


image source

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Library News - Carol Hassler

Celebrating the Life of Beth Bland

We are saddened to announce the passing of library associate, Beth Bland. Beth joined the Milwaukee County Law Library in 2019, but she was a member of Milwaukee's legal community for many years prior. We will remember Beth's patience, humor, and tremendous work ethic. She was an incredible asset to the library and a good friend who will be greatly missed.

Announcing Tammy Keller's retirement

In November, the library bade a fond farewell to Tammy Keller, program assistant at the library. Tammy provided sterling service to the Wisconsin Court System and the citizens of Wisconsin for 22 years. In her retirement, Tammy looks forward to spending more time in her garden, traveling, and preparing gourmet meals.

Librarians reach out

In November, librarian Carol Hassler spoke with two different groups on legal research topics. She shared tips for legal research and responding to reference questions with Madison and Milwaukee members of the Wisconsin Association of Legal Professionals. At the Wisconsin Library Association's annual conference, Carol presented on how to use the Wisconsin Circuit Court Records database, as well as sources and strategies for legal research.

In the December 1st issue of the State Bar of Wisconsin's InsideTrack, don't miss our quick primer on privacy law research with Legal Research 101: Exploring Privacy Laws.

State holiday closures

All three library locations will be closed on Friday, December 24 and December 31 for state holidays. Call the Reference Desk at 608-267-9696 and leave a voicemail, or Ask a Librarian online while we are closed. We will respond to you the following week.

Winter classes

Webinars for 2022 are now open for registration through the Wisconsin State Law Library, starting with some familiar favorites. Registration for each webinar is limited to 100. Registrations will be approved daily by the moderator. Once your registration is approved, you will get an email confirmation with connection information. Please reach out to carol.hassler@wicourts.gov with questions.

Introduction to Wisconsin Legislative History
Wednesday, January 12, 12:00 - 1:00 PM
Location: Live webinar - Register for Introduction to Wisconsin Legislative History
1 CLE credit applied for

I need the legislative history of a Wisconsin statute. Where do I start? What do I do? Participants will look at the primary resources used to research Wisconsin legislative history, learn about the online Wisconsin legislative drafting files, and learn some helpful tips and tricks along the way. This introductory class covers basic research strategies and sources.

Advanced Wisconsin Legislative History
Wednesday, February 9, 12:00 - 1:00 p.m.
Location: Live webinar - Register for Advanced Wisconsin Legislative History
1 CLE credit applied for

I need the legislative history of a Wisconsin statute. Where do I start? What do I do? Participants will look at the primary resources used to research Wisconsin legislative history, learn about the online Wisconsin legislative drafting files, and learn some helpful tips and tricks along the way. This advanced class covers additional search strategies, budget bills, advanced use of drafting records, and Supreme Court rule order research.

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December Snapshot

snowflake lighting

Winter's Gleam
Photo by Carol Hassler

While we eagerly await the arrival of the winter solstice and gradually lengthening days, it's nice to bask in the illuminated snowflakes lining downtown Madison.

We are accepting snapshots! Do you have a photo highlighting libraries, attractions or points of historical interest? Send your photo to the editor at carol.hassler@wicourts.gov to be included in a future issue.

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