Library of the Senate

of Pennsylvania

PA Senate Library History PA Senate Library History

History of the Library

For over two hundred years, the Library of the Senate has served as the major source of information on the Institution. Brimming with its collection of legislative documents, journals, and law books, the Senate Library is an excellent place of reference for Senate Members and staff. For those conducting research, materials may be used in the library or checked out for use in Members' offices. For visitors, the Senate Library is a reference-only library. A network of libraries in the Capitol Complex and throughout the Commonwealth may be used to satisfy requests for information not available in the Senate Library, and Senate Library staff are happy to facilitate such requests.

Beyond its role as a source of research, the Senate Library memorializes the Institutional history of the Senate through its permanent museum display and featuring exhibitions, which opened in autumn 2018. These allow visitors the opportunity to learn more about the Senate's unique Institutional history, critical legislative functions, and dedicated public servants.


As part of the Senate Library's mission, a permanent museum display and featured exhibitions are on view for visitors to experience the untold story of the Pennsylvania Senate.

Fun Facts

Years of the Senate:


The Senate was founded in 1790 and has had over 150 sessions since its inception.

Years of the Senate Library:


The Senate Library existed as early as 1809, when court cases and other reference materials were housed within its collections.

Books at the Senate Library:


There are over 10,000 volumes of books held within the Senate Library's collections.



The Senate Library maintains a diverse collection of Pennsylvania legislative documents and law books. Some of the collection's highlights include:

  • Appropriations Acts
  • Case Law
  • Directories
  • Hearings and Reports of Pennsylvania Bills
  • Laws
  • Legislative Histories of Pennsylvania Bills
  • Legislative Journals