THOMAS.gov, the online legislative information system, officially retired July 5th, completing its multi-year transition to Congress.gov.
THOMAS originally came on the map in 1995, launched by the Library of Congress as a bipartisan initiative of Congress. Over the years, the system has been updated, but eventually its essential foundation couldn’t accommodate the desires and expectations of modern users – somewhat similar to our cataloging-world outgrowing the framework of AACR2 and beginning fresh with RDA. The Congress.gov system, launched in beta in September 2012, offers mobile-friendly access, single search across all collections and all dates, meaningful persistent URLs, faceted search, and other new features such as videos explaining the legislative process.
All available THOMAS data is available to users at Congress.gov, and both Thomas.loc.gov and www.thomas.gov now redirect visitors to Congress.gov. Although many THOMAS URLs will be automatically redirected, updating your links is a recommended best practice, as THOMAS URLs that are not redirected to a specific page will go to the Congress.gov homepage – so don’t forget to update your bookmarks, Libguide links and more. You can find a chart providing Congress.gov URLs for popular THOMAS pages as well as additional information about link updating and redirects at https://www.congress.gov/help/faq.
Want to learn more about Congress.gov? The Law Library of Congress offers webinar and in-person orientation overviews of Congress.gov focused on searching legislation and Congressional member information as well as highlighting new Congress.gov features. To register for a webinar, complete their Seminar Form here (http://www.loc.gov/law/opportunities/congress-form.php).