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Hampden Law Library

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The Hampden Law Library is a designated Federal Depository for selected government documents. Some of these government materials are also available on the Internet via GPO Access and the FDLP Electronic Collection.

Prior to a major reorganization of the trial court system in 1978, the individual libraries functioned as county law libraries, established in the first half of the 19th century under a series of state enabling and funding statutes. They were organized and administered in the respective counties by associations of attorneys and funded by the counties to provide for the research needs of the bench and the bar. Pursuant to the early state statutes and association by-laws, inhabitants of the respective counties were to have the right of access and use.

In 1978 the Massachusetts legislature, with the stated purpose of "promoting the orderly and effective administration of the judicial system of the Commonwealth," created a "Trial Court" to be administered by a "Chief Administrative Justice." Pursuant to Chapter 478 of the Acts of 1978:

  • there was to be an "administrative consolidation of the several courts of trial jurisdiction, so as to encourage a broader availability of personnel and other resources for the hearing of all causes on an equitable basis..."
  • all "costs of maintenance and operation of the judicial branch," including the former county law libraries, were to be paid by the Commonwealth
  • "all books, papers, equipment, furnishings...purchased by the counties or in the custody of or maintained primarily for the use of the juducial branch" were "declared to be the property of the Commonwealth, and...under the control of the judicial branch."

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Details and Specs

Hours of Operation:
Mon8:00 AM4:00 PM
Tue8:00 AM4:00 PM
Wed8:00 AM4:00 PM
Thr8:00 AM4:00 PM
Fri8:00 AM4:00 PM
Notes: None Listed


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