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Lloyd Sealy Library
John Jay College of Criminal Justice

Ebooks: Historical and Primary Source Collections

About Primary Sources

Go to our research guide on primary sources, for an explanation of these types of sources and a more comprehensive look at the Library's primary source collection, both in print and online.

Legal Classics


The Legal Classics library offers more than 2,400 works from some of the greatest legal minds in history, including Joseph Story, Jeremy Bentham, William Blackstone, William Holdsworth, Henry Maine, Frederick William Maitland, Frederick Pollock, Louis Brandeis, Benjamin N. Cardozo, Edwardo Coke and many more! In addition to many "classics", this collection includes rare items that are found in only a handful of libraries around the world. The collection focuses on constitutional law, comparative law, political science, and other classic topics. Browse the collection by title, author, subject, or date.

Electronic Primary Source Book Collections

The Library's collection of electronic historical primary texts has expanded enormously, and now includes:

Early English Books Online (EEBO): contains page images of virtually every work printed in England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and British North America and works in English printed elsewhere from 1473 to 1700.

Eighteenth Century Collections Online (ECCO): A digital archive of 150,000 books published in the eighteenth century, covering a broad spectrum of topics like law, history, science, and art.

EEBO and ECCO can be searched together. If you wish to do so, when you are on the advanced search screen of either, choose the option to include documents from ECCO or EEBO.

Law Library Microform Consortium (LLMC) is a non-profit cooperative of libraries that preserves and makes accessible legal titles and government documents from around the world. Through its online subscription service, LLMC Digital, the Consortium makes available legal titles that are at risk due to age or other factors, converting print and microform titles to current media. LLMC Digital includes over 12,000 titles and over 74 million images. Some of this content is freely available through its open access site.  [This description is an excerpt of an overview by Karen Okamoto available at].  For infomation on how to search this database see this brief video  (click Tutorial).

The Making of the Modern World: Provides the full text of over 62,000 works, including books and other monographs, on business, politics, and economics published from 1450 to 1850. Includes the full Goldsmiths’-Kress Library of Economic Literature.