Urban Legal History:The Development of New Haven Robert Ellickson
Yale Law School Spring 1998

Best Places to Research New Haven in New Haven

Compiled by Tina Forbush, Research Assistant to Professor Ellickson, 5/14/96

All but one of the following research facilities are within a ten-minute walk of campus, and all but one are free. Hours may have changed since this was compiled, so you may want to call and check. It is worth noting that most of the places are open only on M-Fr 9-5, so you may want to plan your research accordingly. Also note that Yale has a tremendous amount of material useful for research, but you may find it divided between several different libraries.

Yale Libraries

Library Hours General Description of Holdings
Art & Architecture
180 York St.
M-Th 8:30-11
Fr 8:30-5
Sat 10:30-5
Sun 2-11
Only about ten relevant books, mostly New Haven architecture. Circulation rules are tight: one book at a time for 24 hours, fines start at $3 per hour.
Cross Campus
120 High St.
Mon-Th 8:30-2 am
Mon-Fr 8:30-10
Sat 10-7
Sun 12-2
Best place to go for recent secondary sources on both New Haven and urban planning. All available for 2-week circulation. User beware:they collect heavy fines here.
Divinity School
409 Prospect St.
Mon-Th 8:30-11
Fr 8:30-5
Sat 8:30-5
Sun 6-11
Has a smattering of old secondary sources on New Haven, including Seymour and Osterweis. A good place to go if books are unavailable elsewhere. Has many archives on New Haven voluntary service organizations, including settlement houses.
Law School
127 Wall St.
24 hours Has several old secondary sources on New Haven, including colony records and city ordinances. Has Private, Public and Special Acts for the State of Connecticut. Has city atlases in closed stacks. Has a large, random selection of post-1950 primary and secondary sources. Great for trials and cases, of course. You must check MORRIS to locate these sources; ORBIS does not have a good listing of Law School holdings.
38 Mansfield St.
Mon-Fr 8:30-5
Sat 10-5
Very few materials in the stacks. Does have two circulating copies of Osterweis.
Social Science
140 Prospect St
Mon-Th 8:30-11
Fr 8:30-5
Sat 9:30-6
Sun 1-5
Very few materials, but useflal for recent information on Yale-New Haven urban planning and housing impact studies.
Sterling Memorial
120 High St.
Sat 10-5
Sun 1 -midnight
Mon-Th 8:30- midnight
Fr 8:30-5
Good collection of old secondary sources. Has all New Haven City Directories. Has New Haven Colony and Town Records. Cataloguing a bit unorganized--you have to search in several sections for what you want. Has all Yale dissertations ever published about New Haven.
Sterling Memorial
Manuscripts and
120 High St.
First Floor
Mon-Fr 9-4:45 Excellent collections from prominent persons/businesses of New Haven's history. Focus is on correspondence, diaries, business/office records. Strongest on materials pertaining to Yale. Has Lee/Logue, Seymour, and Hillhouse records; many 1800s New Haven deeds; Presidents' Reports. Materials do not circulate. Consult a staff member before you begin--they are a tremendous help. Copying available for $.20 a page.
Sterling Memorial
Map Collection
120 High St
Seventh Floor
Mon-Fr 1-5
Tu 7-9
The best place for maps in town, from 1700s on Map Collection Strongest on 1850-1920 and 1950 to present. Has . four sets of Sanborn Insurance maps. Most maps are very large. Materials do not circulate. Copying is available for $1, $2 or $4 depending on size; reductions not possible.

Out on the Town

Resource Hours General Description of Holding
New Haven Colony Historical
114 Whitney
Just north of Trumbull St.
T-Fr 1-5
First Sat of each
month 1-5
Library has strongest combination of primary and secondary sources in New Haven. Has New Haven Colony and Town records, Dana collection, housing archives, Lee collection on microfilm, collections of various New Haven personages and organizations throughout the ages. Very supportive and knowledgeable staff. Has open stacks with secondary sources; all manuscripts are in closed stacks. A catalog of the manuscript collections is available at the Society as well as at Yale and New Haven libraries. Collection is non-circulating. Copying is available at $50 a page. Admission to library is $2 per visit, or $15 for a year-long student pass.
New Haven Department of City Planning
165 Church St.
Room 513
Annex, Old City Hall
Just south of Elm
M-Fr 9-5 Library has best collection in town of post- 1960 city-produced primary sources on New Haven planning. Along with Aldermanic Journals and City Year Books, offers surveys/reports on everything from housing plans to Long Wharf redevelopment to city park planning. Slide collection. Large map room with tax assessment and zoning maps. One big disadvantage: nothing is catalogued or indexed, and there are no librarians to answer questions. Many collections are incomplete. Copies are .25 per page. Current ward and zoning maps (with plot divisions) may be purchased.
New Haven Free
Public Library
133 Elm St.
On the comer of Temple St.
M-Th 9-9
Fr-Sat 9:30-5
Local History Room provides a solid collection of both primary and secondary sources. Compactness makes it a nice place to research. Has New Haven Town Records, Journal of Aldermen back to 1860s, City Year Books, City Directories, city charters and ordinances. Weak on maps and pre-1850 primary sources. Non circulating; copying available at $. 10 a page. A few secondary sources available in the library's circulating collection.
New Haven On Line 24 hours http://statlab.stat.yale.edu/nhoI On line bibliography on New Haven resources; searching done by subject. List of post-1965 dissertations on New Haven.
New Haven Register Library
40 Sargent Dr.
Long Wharf
M-W 4-7 pm Newspaper clippings since 1940 catalogued by individuals and subject. On computer data base since 1986. Files are available by appointment only; library time is $10 per hour (copying may be done at no extra charge).
New Haven
Town Clerk's Office
200 Orange St.
Hall of Records
Second Floor
M-Fr 9-5 Records of land transfers all the way back to the 1640s. Computer searches available by last name of grantor/grantee. Has all land records, tax liens and assessments. Also has nice atlases created for the City Engineer. Well organized. Busy staff, so research is self-service. Copying is available at $. 10 a page, but only for 8 1/2 " x 14 " pages.
88 Trumbull St.
Between Temple and Hillhouse
M-Fr 9-4:30 Has a small resource center with information on voluntary service organizations and nonprofits. Not specific to New Haven, but good general material on the subject.
Yale Office of
New Haven Affairs
Temple St.
between Trumbull and Grove
M-Fr 9-5 Very limited resources for research, but excellent materials on the post- 1990 relationship between New Haven and Yale. No library.

Do not go to the Yale Secretary's Office on the Second Floor of Woodbridge Hall; they do not have any research information on file.

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