Chicago Law Institute

From HistoryWiki

Chicago Law Institute Soundex Code C220

Chicago Law Institute was incorporated in 1857. The object and intention of its organization was "for literary purposes, the cultivation of legal science, the advancement of jurisprudence, and the formation of a law library in the city of Chicago, in the county of Cook."

The law library was immediately started by a consolidation of different libraries of individual stockholders, and was sustained in the manner set forth in the charter and by-laws.

At the time of the great conflagration in October, 1871, the library contained about 7,000 volumes, mainly English and American reports. The fire totally destroyed it. Its re-establishment was immediately begun, and by purchase and voluntary contributions on the part of several states of their reports, and of private parties, who sent in valuable works from their own libraries.

Tuesday, December 31, 1901, the library contained 38,224 volumes. A great many duplicate session laws and state publications are not included in this number.

The first catalog of the library was published in 1881, when they listed 14,000 volumes. A revised edition as published Saturday, January 15, 1887, when the library contained nearly 20,000 bound volumes. Lists of yearly accessions were printed, which were consolidated in 1893 under the title of supplemental catalog. These publications were very defective. Additional catalogs were undertaken from time to time by assistant librarians, but not completed, until at a general meeting in 1901 the executive committee ordered a catalog of the library to be prepared and printed.

What we said in the preface to the 1881 and 1887 catalog applies also to the present one: "There are no bibliographical merits whatever claimed for this catalog. It was intended simply as an index for the members of the Institute, giving a concise inventory of the titles of books and subjects contained in our library, alphabetically arranged."

Reports of trials are placed in the subject index under two lists — the first arranged alphabetically, the second by subjects.

The rules of court of the Appellate and Supreme Courts of Illinois, and of the United States Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, as published in the reports, are given in the governmental index, under the respective heads of Illinois and United States. The rules of the supreme courts of many states, which were not published in pamphlet form and only appear in the reports, were omitted.

It was still going strong in April, 1955 when a report of the Institute electing new officers was published. This is as far as a Google search went.


Charles Aaron, 1919.

Henry J. Aaron, 1919.

Charles Peters Abbey, 1917, 1919.

Emory Duffield Fraker, 1911.

Clarles Benjamin Obermeyer, 1911.