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Legislative History Research: Step 2: Journals

A guide for researching the history of the Minnesota State Legislature.

Using the Journals of the House & Senate

The House and Senate Journals record the action of the legislative bodies' floors, as well as information on which committee(s) heard bills and when the House or Senate referred a bill to a committee. They also record reports of conference committees and other actions on the bill. 

  • For older bills, check in the print House or Senate Journal Index to get a list of the pages that include action or information on your bill.  

You may also want to check for action on your bill in the opposite chamber using the House Index to Senate Bills and the Senate Index to House Bills.  

Once you have the page numbers or have accessed the digital Journal search, you will need to read the Journal entries to determine:

  • The committee(s) to which the bill was referred
  • Date of referral to committee(s)
  • Date of bill's return to the floor from committee(s)
  • All floor actions taken on the bill

Members of the Minnesota House of Representatives meeting in the Senate Chambers

Journal Links

Gale Family Library • Minnesota Historical Society • 345 W. Kellogg Blvd., St. Paul, MN 55102-1906 • 651-259-3300
Currently open by appointment only.