Live Search Books and Canadian Legal Materials


Microsoft’s Live Search has a “Books” section that lets you search for and within the books that Microsoft is scanning for those libraries with which it is partnering. Material in the public domain is 100% searchable, readable on line and, typically, capable of being downloaded in PDF.

I did a very crude search (Canada and Canada AND law) — there doesn’t seem to be an advanced search feature in Live Search Books — and came up with hundreds and hundreds of hits. There is truly a treasure trove here for legal historians and historians of law. I’ve pulled out twenty or so titles, linked back to the documents, and ranging in date from 1876 to 1922, which you can peruse below.

Of note, I think, is the quirky and light-hearted Law of the Road, by Rogers (1876) and the full (over 800 pages) Law of Mortgages (1919) by Falconbridge. Although, nearly every book holds some charm, even if it only serves to show that our current preoccupations with the United States, our constitution and Western Canada are, evidently, perpetual.

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