House and Senate Documents - Additional Information and Research Strategies
Senate treaty documents and House and Senate executive documents may be accessed from the Advanced Search Form (Congressional Publications). House and Senate executive documents included in the Serial Set and Senate treaty documents may also be accessed from the Search By Number Form (Congressional Publications). From the Advanced form, all types of House and Senate documents may be searched in conjunction with the other content in the House & Senate Document category.
Senate treaty documents are issued by the Senate when the President asks them to ratify a treaty. They generally contain the text of the Presidential communication supporting ratification of the treaty and the text of the treaty agreement itself.
Until 1991, treaty document content was issued in executive documents lettered sequentially within each session of Congress (e.g., Exec. Doc. A, 91-1). Executive documents with a lettered identification system were not included in the Serial Set until 1979 (96th Congress). Beginning in 1981, the executive document type of publication for treaty materials was replaced by the Senate treaty document publication type and included in the Serial Set. Senate treaty documents are numbered consecutively within each Congress (e.g., Treaty Doc. 99-1).
Once the President submits a treaty to the Senate for ratification, the treaty stays alive and carries the same publication number, regardless of the Congress, until it is ratified, defeated, or withdrawn.
The majority of the treaty documents concern treaties with foreign governments, but until 1870 they also included treaties with Indian tribes.
Until 1930, the Senate executive document content, including Presidential messages regarding treaties and nominations, were confidential. Originally non-confidential documents on executive branch matters that were included in the Serial Set were also classified as Senate executive documents, but beginning in 1895 the Serial Set executive branch documents were included in the broader Senate documents category.
The Serial Set also includes House executive documents from 1846-1895.
Abstracts and indexing for this content 1970 and forward is available through the basic subscription. Indexing for pre-1970 content is available through the optional Congressional Indexes historical module. The full text of pre-1970 content included in the Serial Set is available through the U.S. Serial Set Digital Collection.
ProQuest Congressional also makes available annotated indexing for Senate executive documents (treaty documents) issued from 1825-1969 through the optional historical indexes module.