Welcome, Alex Jakubow!

Alex Jakubow
Alex Jakubow

 

With the new year, you may have noticed a new face in the library. Alex Jakubow joins our research and reference team to support empirical legal research. Alex is skilled with data collection, cleaning and analysis. As law increasingly turns towards large datasets and statistical methods, his expertise will be critical to supporting UVA Law scholarship.

A Wisconsin native, Alex earned a bachelor’s degree in history and political science from the University of Richmond in 2008. He then attended graduate school at Rutgers University, where he earned a Ph.D. in political science in 2014.

Alex married his graduate school sweetheart, Devon Golem, in September of 2012. Career decisions have taken the pair across the entirety of the continental United States and back in a relatively short amount of time. In less than four years, Alex and Devon have lived in New Jersey, California, and New Mexico before moving to Virginia in December of 2015. Alex and Devon look forward to staying in place for a while, especially when family is near: Alex’s mother and sister respectively live in Williamsburg and Alexandria.

Lunch Lady Doris
Lunch Lady Doris.

 

Devon and Alex live in Charlottesville with their canine companion, Lunch Lady Doris. Doris, a brownish-red Papillion/Dachshund mix, is approximately eight years old. She enjoys having Alex and Devon as tenants in her apartment and sneezes uncontrollably when excited.

Outside of work, Alex enjoys reading, traveling, exercising, and socializing with loved ones. He also looks forward to taking full advantage of the area’s many and varied opportunities for outdoor fun. Guilty pleasures: prolonged consumption of Netflix and, when his family is out of town, video games.

– MoreUs Staff Writers 

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Arthur J. Morris Law Library

The Arthur J. Morris Law Library is the home of research for students and faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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The New Collaborative Classroom

We are very excited to be debuting the new Collaborative Classroom in room WB 278 in the library (the room with the big leather chairs). We’ve relocated the magazines and books from that room to our new reading room downstairs and converted WB 278 into an interactive classroom and workspace for students. The comfy chairs are still there, but you will also find new modular furniture and four big displays—all designed for skills-based classes and student collaboration.

Collaborative Classroom
The new Collaborative Classroom.

We’ll be using the new room for all of our Advanced Legal Research classes. That class is very much a “learn by doing” course where the students are the focus of each class session. The modular furniture will allow us to easily reconfigure the room on the fly for small group work, large group work or full class discussion. All of the displays are set up so that any student can link their laptop to the display in order to easily share their work with the full class, allowing students to drive the class from their own laptops. We will work together on research exercises and easily switch from small group work to full class discussions using the displays, putting the students in charge of their skill development. We’re thrilled to be able to start using the new interactive space with our Fall Advanced Legal Research classes.

The collaborative classroom is open for student use whenever a class is not in session. Feel free to link your laptops to the displays, rearrange the furniture, and relax in the leather chairs as long as no one is teaching in the room at the time. Just let us know at the reference desk if you have any questions about using the room.

– Ben Doherty 

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Ben Doherty

Ben is a research librarian and Head of Instructional Services at the Law Library. He has worked at the Law Library since 2004.

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Second Edition of Olson’s Principles of Legal Research Published

 

Kent Olson
Kent Olson.

This week, West Academic released the second edition of Kent Olson’s highly acclaimed Principles of Legal Research. The first edition of Principles earned Olson his second Joseph L. Andrews Bibliographic Award from the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), which honors a significant contribution to legal bibliographic literature. Principles is the product of Olson’s many years of practicing the art and craft of legal research, and of teaching Advanced Legal Research to many bright and able students at the University of Virginia School of Law. It is the successor to the venerable How to Find the Law, published in nine editions beginning in 1931, the last of which Olson co-authored with Morris Cohen and Robert Berring.

The second edition of Principles of Legal Research remains true to its roots as an indispensable guide to practical legal research. Much of legal research still relies on traditional print-based sources and methods, and for those situations, the book offers refuge for those who may be more comfortable conducting research with a keyboard, mouse, and touch screen than by sifting through hefty tomes of pulp and ink. At the same time, Principles is a trustworthy compass for intelligent navigation of the latest generation of algorithm-based online legal research systems and the vast and growing array of Internet-delivered legal information services.

Works by Kent Olson
An extensive collection of works authored, co-authored or compiled by Kent Olson.

 

Skillful legal research requires a foundational knowledge of how law is made and interpreted and a solid understanding of the documentary outputs of those processes, and Principles of Legal Research offers novice readers the knowledge of both. The book has features that also make it a valuable reference work for experienced legal researchers, including copious footnotes, indexing, and a useful appendix of treatises and services arranged by subject. New to this edition, images of key websites are displayed in full color.

A prolific writer, Kent Olson is also the author of Legal Information: How to Find It, How to Use It (1999) and is author or co-author of several iterations of West’s Legal Research in a Nutshell, now in its 11th edition. Olson is an expert legal researcher and a dedicated professor of legal research. For nearly three decades he has also been colleague, friend, and mentor to the Law Library staff. We heartily congratulate Kent Olson on his latest literary achievement!

– The Law Library Staff

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Arthur J. Morris Law Library

The Arthur J. Morris Law Library is the home of research for students and faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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18th Century Dictionary Returns to U.Va.

18th Century Dictionary
Photo: Title page to the 1766 edition of Malachy Postlethwayt’s Universal Dictionary of Trade and Commerce.

In 1766, British economic writer Malachy Postlethwayt argued that the grand commercial ambitions of the British empire started with good bookkeeping, proper paperwork, and some knowledge about people beyond London. To equip eager young traders to grow British overseas commerce, and by extension the royal revenue, after the 1763 Treaty of Paris, Postlethwayt penned a new edition of his Universal Dictionary of Trade and Commerce, rich with explanations of the mechanics of trade.[1] The Law Library is thrilled to add Volume 1 of this eighteenth-century guide to the globe to its Special Collections as part of the Library’s ongoing project to acquire duplicate editions of the law books listed in the U.Va. Library Catalogue of 1828. Both volumes of Postlethwayt’s Dictionary formed part of the U.Va. Library’s original collections on mercantile law.

For the modern reader, as for the young U.Va. student perusing this reference in the University library in the 1820s, Postlethwayt’s Dictionary explains the vocabulary, products, and practices of eighteenth-century commerce from the London Custom House to the north African caravan.[2] Curious how bills of exchange worked? Check the section on Banking. Wondering about the pearl fishery off of southern India? See the section on East India Trade. Pondering whether eighteenth-century British consumers are likely to continue their new practice of coffee drinking? See Postlethwayt’s thoughts under Coffee. (Spoiler: Yes. Postlethwayt praised coffee for clearing the head and relieving sleepiness, though he warned that drinking too much in one day would surely hazard the “repose of the night.” A stickler for the good stuff, Postlethwayt advised that “coffee which is newly ground has the most virtue.”)

A chart for arbitrating currency exchanges among the major commercial centers of Europe
Photo: A chart for arbitrating currency exchanges among the major commercial centers of Europe. Postlethwayt wrote that traders should be “thoroughly informed” in this branch of commerce.

With commerce always enmeshed in matters of geography, language, and especially law, Postlethwayt’s Dictionary offers a detailed look not only into the minutiae of trade—swearing oaths at the Custom House, filling out double-entry ledgers—but also the lives of those who engaged in or supported trade around London and around the globe. Postlethwayt had specific advice for British merchants who often found themselves entangled in legal disputes: find an honest, able, and experienced attorney at law. Attorneys were gentlemen and scholars, Postlethwayt wrote, who started clerkships at sixteen, understood Latin and French, knew their way around ancient deeds, wrote well, and could unravel any business account laid before them.

At four inches thick, Volume 1 of Postlethwayt’s Universal Dictionary covers letters A to K and adds to the U.Va. Law Library’s rich collections on the historical practice of law. Special Collections hopes to add the second volume to its inventory in the future.

For research in this or any item at the Law Library Special Collections, see our webpage or contact Special Collections at archives@law.virginia.edu.

– Randi Flaherty 

_______

References:

Peter Groenewegen, ‘Postlethwayt, Malachy (1707–1767)’, Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Oxford University Press, 2004; online edn, Jan 2013 [http://www.oxforddnb.com/view/article/22599, accessed 28 Oct 2014]


[1] Malachy Postlethwayt and Jacques Savary des Brûlons. The Universal Dictionary of Trade and Commerce: With Large Additions and Improvements, Adapting the Same to the Present State of British Affairs in America, Since the Last Treaty of Peace Made in the Year 1763. With Great Variety of New Remarks and Illustrations Incorporated Throughout the Whole: Together with Everything Essential That Is Contained in Savary’s Dictionary: Also, All the Material Laws of Trade and Navigation Relating to These Kingdoms, and the Customs and Usages to Which All Traders Are Subject. (London: H. Woodfall, 1766.)

[2] Postlethwayt’s Universal Dictionary provided a British perspective on these topics, though Postlethwayt also borrowed liberally from a previous dictionary by the Frenchman Jacques Savary des Brûlons.

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Randi Flaherty

Randi Flaherty is the Special Collections Librarian at the Arthur J. Morris Law Library. She is also an early American historian with a focus on foreign maritime commerce in the early American republic.

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Take a Deep Dive into Lawmaking with FiscalNote

Want to keep up with what’s happening in Congress and in state legislatures? Check out one of the Law Library’s newest database offerings – FiscalNote. FiscalNote’s team of software and public policy entrepreneurs (including a U.Va. Law alum) have developed software and a fun, user-friendly interface that puts at people’s fingertips volumes of information that would take lots of capitol insiders tons of time to compile. FiscalNote gives you not only loads of information, but also crunches that information to predict whether bills will pass. And it delivers straight to your email inbox, via alerts you customize to your interests. Part of the start-up’s mission is to “foster a transparent political and legal system,” and they’ve been attracting press (see #5 of 11) and venture capital interest. See what the buzz is about by signing up for a password.

– Kristin Glover 

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Kristin Glover

Kristin Glover is a Research Librarian at the Arthur J. Morris Law Library.

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Does Studying Keep You on Your Feet?

What do Thomas Jefferson, Winston Churchill, Virginia Woolf, and Ernest Hemingway all have in common? Beyond creativity and writing skills, they all used standing desks. 

Standing desks have recently become fashionable, used at corporations like Google and Facebook, and other hip places like the Law Library. 

Wait, the Law Library? Yep, we now have two height adjustable standing desks in the Law Library, located outside of the Klaus Reading Room and on the north end of the reference study area by the windows. Studies show that standing desks help to improve focus and the ability to plow through tasks. Try the standing desks and let us know what you think.  

– Micheal Klepper  

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Arthur J. Morris Law Library

The Arthur J. Morris Law Library is the home of research for students and faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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A Short Walk, A Historical Journey

The Law Library invites you to take a few moments to experience the exhibit at the Library’s front entrance on the history of the Law School. We hope that both current and prospective students, as well as our many visitors, will gain a better understanding of who we are, where we have been and how we came to be a top ten law school. Some of the items you will find in the display cases include a letter in Thomas Jefferson’s hand, student notebooks from the 1800’s, a once-renowned golden calf trophy from the annual faculty-student softball tournament, the first Virginia Law Weekly, pictures of Barristers Balls and Libel Shows from as early as the 1950’s and a mason jar with a special meaning to a couple of students from the Roaring Twenties!

In this exhibit, our history unfolds in photographs, books, buildings, statues and other artifacts. The display is designed to present a decade-by-decade timeline of our history, with law school architecture from all eras serving as the backdrop. Replicas of archival documents and period photographs are mounted in the foreground. A reader-rail running along both sides of the room provides further description of the images. Although the space will not be completely finished until new lighting is installed, most of the display’s content is in place.

We appreciate our students’ patience while the project was underway and apologize that we had to barricade the entrance several times during the construction period. But now the noisy part of the work has been completed, and we hope that you will feel that the effort was worthwhile. As we were constructing the exhibit, several law students walking through the area contributed very good ideas for content, including the notion that a bust of Jefferson must be present. Your thoughts on items that would be of interest to you and your colleagues are welcomed. Check occasionally for changes, because we plan to rotate items on the walls and in the display cases. Now, you who are a part of our history, go investigate!

– Taylor Fitchett 

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Arthur J. Morris Law Library

The Arthur J. Morris Law Library is the home of research for students and faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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A Wall of Joy!

If you’ve been enjoying the cheery ensemble of photos now adorning the Law Library entranceway, you can thank SBA President Brian Park. Park offered a gentle suggestion to library director Taylor Fitchett that the library’s ambiance could use something to uplift it, something like … “a wall of joy.” And so it is!  Soon a more permanent display will occupy the space, but for now we invite you to share with us your photos of those gentle, furry, finned, or feathered creatures that bring so much joy to your life. Thank you, Brian, for the great idea!

– The Library Staff 

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Arthur J. Morris Law Library

The Arthur J. Morris Law Library is the home of research for students and faculty at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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Don’t Just Do Something, Sit There!

On-grounds interviews, moving into a new apartment, classes starting, not to mention moving to a brand new town for your first year of law school … the beginning of a new academic year can feel overwhelming! The law library is offering peace and quiet to help you ease back into the school year … and we’re not talking just about the new study carrels! We are building a collection of books (in print and on CD) and DVDs about mindfulness, meditation, and yoga. 

What does mindfulness have to do with law school and law practice?  A lot, say a growing number of law schools like the University of California at Berkeley, which has an Initiative for Mindfulness in Law and a student-run meditation group. As profiled in this recent ABA Journal article, “Mindfulness in Legal Practice Is Going Mainstream,” attorneys are also exploring its benefits. Hey, Google is bringing mindful meditation into its workplace, so it must be a catchy trend!

If you could use a deep breath or are just curious to learn more, come check out these new additions to our collection. They’re available in the library’s first floor reserve room, next to the DVDs:

This is just a start! Let us know if you have favorite books, CDs, DVDs about mindfulness, meditation, and yoga that you think your classmates would enjoy. Also keep an eye out for announcements about Library-sponsored mindfulness and meditation events coming this fall! 

 – Kristin Glover 

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Kristin Glover

Kristin Glover is a Research Librarian at the Arthur J. Morris Law Library.

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