Official Sources of Treaties & Related Documents

1. United States a Party to the Treaty

United States Treaties and Other International Agreements (UST) [JX 231.A34]. Official State Department publication of U.S. treaty texts, post-ratification, from 1950-date. This is permanent treaty series that culminates and replaces the Treaties and Other International Acts Series (TIAS) slip treaties (see below). Each volume contains a non-cumulating index. Unfortunately, publication lags by more than a decade.

Treaties and Other International Acts Series (TIAS) [JX 231.A341]. Official, serial publication of U.S. treaties, post-ratification, in slip form (consecutively numbered pamphlets). Slip treaties are discarded after bound UST volume becomes available. More current than UST, but publication still lags by several years.

Statutes at Large [KF 50]. Retrospective source of U.S. treaties, post-ratification. This was official U.S. source until 1950, when TIAS and UST systems were implemented. Volume 64 contains a list of all treaties appearing in Statutes at Large; Volume 7 contains a collection of Indian treaties from 1778-1842; volume 8 contains a compilation of U.S. Treaties between 1778-1845; volume 18 contains a compilation of treaties in force as of 1873.

U. S. Department of State Dispatch [JX 1417; Microfiche]. Contains newly ratified treaties, legislative history documents, and other secondary information. Published in print weekly, 1990-1999; now available only on the Web. It serves to supplement Treaties in Force (see Section on Indexes with Current Status Information). Its "Current Treaty Actions" section is also available on the Web from 1997-date.

Department of State Bulletin [Microfiche]. Published monthly, 1939-1977, and weekly 1978-1989. Was precursor to and contains the same type of information as U. S. Department of State Dispatch.

Senate Treaty Documents. Slip documents containing text of treaties as transmitted to Senate for advice and consent, pre-ratification, together with related correspondence from the President and Secretary of State. Good source of legislative history. These documents were called Senate Executive Documents prior to 1981. The Library does not hold these documents in their original slip form; however, since 1970 these documents are comprehensively reprinted in the CIS Microfiche Library and Congressional Universe (see Section on Unofficial Sources). Selective reprints also appear in International Legal Materials , U.S. Department of State Dispatch, U.S. Department of State Bulletin, and United States Code, Congressional and Administrative News (USCCAN) (see Section on Reprints). Documents predating 1970 may be available at the MSU Main Library's Government Documents collection.

Senate Executive Reports. Slip documents containing official recommendations of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations; single most authoritative source for legislative history and text clarification (not to be confused with Senate Executive Documents discussed above). The Library does not hold these documents in their original slip form. After 1970, these documents are comprehensively reprinted in the CIS Microfiche Library and Congressional Universe (see Section on Unofficial Sources). Selective reprints also appear in International Legal Materials , U.S. Department of State Dispatch, U.S. Department of State Bulletin, and United States Code, Congressional and Administrative News (USCCAN) (see Section on Reprints Section).

Congressional Record [KF 35; Microfiche]. Source of legislative history (Senate floor debate), 1873-date; look under the subject heading "Treaties" in its Index. Was preceded by the Congressional Globe (1833-1873). Paper copy kept until microfiche copy received [Note: the MSU Main Library has extensive paper holdings of both the Congressional Record and the Congressional Globe].

Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents [KF 70.A5; Microfiche]. Publishes treaty proclamations by the President, 1965-date (source of legislative history). Paper copy kept until microfiche copy received.

Digests of U.S. Practice in International Law (several title variations) [JX 237]. Annual U.S. Department of State publications covering the documents and files accumulated in the Department since 1906.

2. United States Not Necessarily at Party to the Treaty

United Nations Treaty Series/Recueil Des Traites (UNTS) [Microfiche]. Set contains photographic reproductions of both multilateral and bilateral treaties of members, including U.S., as well as some non-member nations from 1946-date. This title experiences significant publication delays (more than ten years) following ratification. Indexed initially every 100 volumes, now indexed every 50 volumes, with additional indexing delay of up to five years following publication. This is a continuation of League of Nations Treaty Series (LNTS).

League of Nations Treaty Series (LNTS) [Microfiche]. Set contains photographic reproductions of treaties of members, including U.S. that were registered with the League of Nations or are between League members and non-members from 1920-1946. Nine volume, non-cumulative index.

United Nations Treaty Database This web-based database is licensed by MSU College of Law and by MSU. The database provides full-text of treaties, both multilaterals and bilaterals, deposited with the Secretariat and is the electronic equivalent of the United Nations Treaty Series, 1946-date [which has actually been retrospectively converted only as far back as 1986 as of this writing], and Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General (see Section Section on Indexes with Current Status Information) which provides status information on 486 major multilateral instruments deposited with the Secretary-General as of May 1997. Includes an on-line glossary.

United Nations Chronicle [PER]. Published by the U.N. Dept. of Public Information. Provides current awareness and other secondary information. Prior to development of Web site, its "Conventions and Agreements" section was used to supplement Multilateral Treaties Deposited with the Secretary-General (see Section on Indexes with Current Status Information). Published monthly, 1964-1986; published quarterly 1986-date. Library owns 1991-date.

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