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State Constitutions Illustrated

HeinOnline's State Constitutions Illustrated database contains historical and current constitutions for all fifty U.S. states.

About the Database

Selecting a State

The main landing page of State Constitutions Illustrated will bring users to a map view. Users might be familiar with this map from our State Reports: A Historical Archive and Prestatehood Legal Materials databases. To start your research, either stretch your geographical know-how and click the desired state on the map, or select the state name from the drop down menu.

Wondering about those black numbers on the map? The numbers and color coding denote the boundaries of the United States Courts of Appeals; for example, California, Nevada, and the other seven mint green states are part of the United States Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit.

(Note: U.S. territories that are part of these districts are not included on this map).

As State Constitutions Illustrated continues to grow, we will be adding constitutional documents extending back to pre-statehood for every state, providing a comprehensive view of each state's constitutional history. We've been hard at work acquiring this content, and will be adding pre-statehood material to the database monthly until each state is complete.

While all fifty states are current from the elections on November 6, 2018, pre-statehood material is also currently available for the following states:

  • Alabama
  • Indiana
  • Nevada
  • South Dakota
  • Arkansas
  • Iowa
  • New Jersey
  • Tennessee
  • Arizona
  • Kansas
  • New Mexico
  • Texas
  • California
  • Kentucky
  • New York
  • Utah
  • Colorado
  • Louisiana
  • North Carolina
  • Virginia
  • Connecticut
  • Maryland
  • North Dakota
  • Washington
  • Delaware
  • Michigan
  • Ohio
  • West Virginia
  • Florida
  • Minnesota
  • Oklahoma
  • Wisconsin
  • Georgia
  • Mississippi
  • Oregon
  • Wyoming
  • Idaho
  • Missouri
  • Pennsylvania
  • Illinois
  • Montana
  • Rhode Island
 
  • Indiana
  • Nebraska
  • South Carolina
 

With monthly updates, pre-statehood material will be available for the following states by September 2020:

  • Alaska
  • Hawaii
  • Vermont

 

Finding a Constitution

Once you've traveled to your chosen state, at the top of the page you will see a list of all the available constitutions and pre-statehood materials. Click the plus symbol next to the document you'd like to view to display the different options and versions we have. In the example below, clicking the plus symbol next to Amendments for the New York State Constitution of 1938/1939 will bring up two results: amendments regarding Proposals 2 and 3. Keep clicking any plus symbols you encounter to expand the various material nested under these headings.

Expand options

You can also see all available options by clicking Expand All in the upper right-hand corner of the page. To collapse the expanded results, click Close All.

Expand All options

Do you notice the familiar blue More Information icon displayed next to the documents nested under these headings? While you might be used to seeing information like ISSNs and publication frequency displayed in a title's More Information link, in State Constitutions Illustrated More Information links instead provide users with the full title of the document, a description of the document, its official reference number, publication date, source, source location, adoption date, language of origin, and language of document. These More Information links are provided for every constitutional document in State Constitutions Illustrated and the information within them was written by the database's editor, helping guide researchers through the trove of documents provided.

More Information link

Constitutions and Beyond

State Constitutions Illustrated offers more than the constitutions and amendments covered elsewhere in this guide. We've also included hundreds of titles related to a state's constitutional development. Each state has its own Other Related Works section that houses these titles. Scroll under the constitution listing inside a given state to view the other related works specific to that state.

Other related works

Not sure which state you want to research, or interested in just viewing a complete listing of all Other Related Works across all states? Select the All Titles tab that is stationary at the top of the page throughout the collection. Users can select this tab from the map view or from within a particular state to be directed to an A to Z listing of all Other Related Works.

All Titles view

Scholarship through the Ages

Still can't get enough state constitutional material? Check out our Scholarly Articles section in each state for a curated list of scholarship related to its constitutional development. You'll find the link to these scholarly articles above the Expand All | Close All links within a given state.

Scholarly articles

From there, you'll be taken to a list of full-text articles. Sort the results using the facets at the top of the page, by Article Title, Author, Most-Cited, Year (Newest First), or Year (Oldest First), or search the articles by title or author. Click the article title to be taken directly to the article, or if you know it's the one you've been hunting for, jump straight to the PDF download link.

Sort, view, or download articles

Please note that in order to access these articles a user must be subscribed to the appropriate HeinOnline collection(s).