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U.S. Constitution Resources and Constitution Day
Government Documents Librarian
One UTSA Circle
San Antonio, Texas 78249
Government Documents Research Guides at UTSA Libraries
A List of UTSA Government Research Guides
U.S. Congressional Information
Executive Agencies / Office of President
Mission of the UTSA Libraries Government Documents Unit
The mission of the Government Documents Unit is to serve the government information needs of the UTSA community, citizens of the 20th U.S. Congressional District, and the general public by providing free public access, instruction, and quality reference assistance in the use of these materials. UTSA Libraries has been a member of the Federal Depository Library Program since 1973.
Government information at UTSA Libraries is primarily accessed online through free government websites supplemented with commercial subscription databases such as ProQuest Congressional, Statistical Abstract of the United States, NexisUni, and ProQuest Statistical Insight.
Constitution Day is September 17, 2023
"The members of the Constitutional Convention signed the United States Constitution on September 17, 1787 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The Constitutional Convention convened in response to dissatisfaction with the Articles of Confederation and the need for a strong centralized government. After four months of secret debate and many compromises, the proposed Constitution was submitted to the states for approval. Although the vote was close in some states, the Constitution was eventually ratified and the new Federal government came into existence in 1789. The Constitution established the U.S. government as it exists today."
-- United States Constitution: Primary Documents in American History - Library of Congress
Download a free pocket constitution !
Download your free pocket constitution from govinfo.gov !
Information on the Constitution and U.S. Government
- National Constitution CenterExplore the Interactive Constitution at the National Constitution Center In Philadelphia, the only institution in America established by Congress to “disseminate information about the United States Constitution on a non-partisan basis in order to increase the awareness and understanding of the Constitution among the American people.”
- Charters of FreedomFrom the National Archives. The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, & the Bill of Rights among other documents.
- America's Founding Documents: The ConstitutionFacsimiles from the National Archives
- Ben's Guide to U.S. Government for KidsFun and educational introduction to the U.S. government from GPO. Offers age specific games and resources as well as sections for parents and educators. Benjamin Franklin was chosen as the guide as he was the first public librarian in America and first official printer of the colonies.
- Constitution Annotated: Analysis and InterpretationRegularly updated online version of the Constitution Annotated from Congress.gov
Also see current and historical versions through govinfo.gov
The Constitution is the landmark legal document of the United States & comprises the primary law of the U.S. Federal Government. Includes the Constitution with annotations for historic Supreme Court cases, along with laws declared unconstitutional.
- Making of The ConstitutionStreaming Video
Account of the events leading up to the creation of the Constitution. Conforming to civics and history curriculums, the program puts key events into historical perspective by examining the pressures faced by Loyalists, Patriots, and average colonists.
- Primary Documents in American History"The Library of Congress is home to many of the most important documents in American history. This Web site provides links to materials digitized from the collections of the Library of Congress that supplement and enhance the study of these crucial documents."
New E-books on U.S. Constitution
- Daniel Webster and the Unfinished Constitution by Peter Charles HofferCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2021 University Press of KansasWebster's analysis of 3 key constitutional issues relevant to today's constitutional conflicts: the relationship between law and politics, between public policy and private rights, and between the federal government and the states.
- Constitutional Orphan : Gender Equality and the Nineteenth Amendment by Monopoli, Paula A.Call Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2020 Oxford University PressRatification -- Validity -- Enforcement legislation -- A self-executing amendment -- Voting and jury service -- Voting and holding public office -- Defining equality -- The Nineteenth Amendment today.
- 100 Years of the Nineteenth Amendment by Holly J. McCammon (Editor); Lee Ann Banaszak (Editor)Call Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2018 Oxford2020 marked the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment giving many women in the United States the right to vote. The struggle for suffrage lasted over six decades and involved more than a million women; yet, even at the moment of the amendment's enactment, women's activists disagreed heartily over how much had been achieved, whether it was necessary for women to continue organizing for political rights, and what those political rights would bring.
- A Revolution in Favor of Government : Origins of the U.S. Constitution and the Making of the American State by Max M. EdlingCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2003What were the intentions of the Founders? Was the American constitution designed to protect individual rights? To limit the powers of government? To curb the excesses of democracy? Or to create a robust democratic nation-state?
- The Original Compromise: What the Constitution's Framers Were Really Thinking by David Brian RobertsonCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2013In this provocative account of the framing of the Constitution, Robertson observes that the Federalist Papers represented only one side in a fierce argument that was settled by compromise--in fact, multiple compromises.
- The Lost History of the Ninth Amendment by Kurt T. LashCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2009The 9th Amendment has had a remarkably robust history, playing a role in almost every significant constitutional debate in American history, including the controversy over the Alien and Sedition Acts, the struggle over slavery, and the constitutionality of the New Deal. The 9th Amendment to the Constitution addresses rights, retained by the people, that are not specifically enumerated in the Constitution.
- Dirty Words and Filthy Pictures: Film and the First Amendment by Jeremy GeltzerCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2016Today, the First Amendment protects a wide range of free speech, but this wasn't always the case.
- We the People: the Fourteenth Amendment and the Supreme Court by Michael J. PerryCall Number: E-bookISBN: 0195151259Publication Date: 2001Evaluates the grave charge that the modern Supreme Court has engineered a "judicial usurpation of politics." In particular, Perry inquires which of several major Fourteenth Amendment conflicts--over race segregation, race-based affirmative action, sex-based discrimination, homosexuality, abortion, and physician-assisted suicide--have been resolved as they should have been.
Books on the Constitution at the UTSA Libraries
- The Constitution: An Introduction by Michael Stokes Paulsen; Luke PaulsenCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2015A grand tour of provisions, principles, and interpretation, introducing readers to the characters and controversies that have shaped the Constitution in the 200-plus years since its creation.
- The 9/11 Terror Cases : Constitutional Challenges in the War Against Al Qaeda by Allan A. RyanCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2015
- The Fourth Amendment in Flux: The Roberts Court, Crime Control, and Digital Privacy by Michael C. Gizzi; R. Craig CurtisCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2016Balancing freedom against security in the context of the challenges of the twenty-first century.
- America's Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By by Akhil Reed AmarCall Number: KF4541 .A875 2012Publication Date: 2012Legal scholar Akhil Reed Amar presents an exploration of the various factors that we consider in the course of interpreting the Constitution, but which are not actually enumerated in the written document.
- Living with Guns: A Liberal's Case for the Second Amendment by Craig R. WhitneyCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2012He re-examines why the right to bear arms was enshrined in the Bill of Rights, and how it came to be misunderstood.
- American Epic : Reading the U.S. Constitution by Garrett EppsCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2013Epps takes us through a complete reading of the Constitution--even the "boring" parts--to achieve an appreciation of its power and a holistic understanding of what it says.
- Encyclopedia of the Fourth Amendment by John R. Vile; David L. Hudson (Editor)Call Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2012The law of search and seizure-in the physical as well as the online world.
- Privacy at Risk: The New Government Surveillance and the Fourth Amendment by Christopher SloboginCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2015Applying the Fourth Amendment's prohibition on unreasonable searches and seizures, argues that courts should prod legislatures into enacting more meaningful protection against government overreaching.
- Lincoln and the Politics of Slavery: the Other Thirteenth Amendment and the Struggle to Save the Union by Daniel CroftsCall Number: E-book (also in print E457.2 .C935 2016)Publication Date: 2016
- Sexual Rights in America: the Ninth Amendment and the Pursuit of Happiness by Paul R. Abramson; Steven D. Pinkerton; Mark HuppinCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2003Sexual Rights in America presents a bold and intriguing look at the constitutional basis of sexual rights in America. Resurrecting the "forgotten" Ninth Amendment, which guarantees those fundamental rights not protected elsewhere in the Constitution,
- Conventional Wisdom: The Alternate Article V Mechanism for Proposing Amendments to the U.S. Constitution by John R. VileCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2016Article V of the Constitution allows two-thirds majorities of both houses of Congress to propose amendments to the document and a three-fourths majority of the states to ratify them.
- Critiquing Free Speech : First Amendment Theory and the Challenge of Interdisciplinarity by Matthew D. BunkerCall Number: E-bookPublication Date: 2001Explores the work of contemporary free speech critics and argues that, while at times these critics provide important lessons, many of their conclusions must be rejected.
- Dispelling the Myth of the Second Amendment by Mary B. McCordCall Number: Online ReportPublication Date: 2021Brennan Center for Justice
Constitution Day 2019
Constitution Day at UTSA Libraries