COLUMBUS — Researching a critical piece in the history of the Ohio Constitution has been made easier through the efforts of the Supreme Court of Ohio.
More than 2,000 pages of the “Proceedings and Debates of the Constitutional Convention of the State of Ohio 1912” are now accessible and searchable through the Supreme Court’s Web site.
Law students, researchers, the bench, the bar and history buffs have at their disposal a word-for-word account of what the delegates to the convention discussed during their 22 weeks of meetings.
Asking for help
Steven H. Steinglass, a professor of law and dean emeritus at Cleveland State University’s Cleveland-Marshall College of Law, asked Supreme Court Justice Maureen O’Connor for her help in mobilizing the Court’s resources to digitize the historical records.
Steinglass teaches a course on the history of the Ohio Constitution. He said that the 1912 proceedings were the most significant piece of Ohio constitutional history that had remained offline.
“The interest in these documents goes beyond law school students at Cleveland State University. This access also will be of benefit to undergraduate and graduate students throughout the state as well as to lawyers, judges, the media and other researchers,” Steinglass noted.
Getting it done
Supreme Court staff members scanned all 2,254 pages of the proceedings, grouped the pages according to date and linked each day’s proceedings to a PDF document with search capabilities.
Among some of the more interesting facts contained in the volumes are the 42 amendments proposed by the convention and the names, addresses and occupations of the delegates from all 88 counties.