History

  • Rendering of Jenkins Law Library in Room 600, Philadelphia City Hall
    Rendering of Jenkins Law Library in Room 600, Philadelphia City Hall
  • Receipt for two law books from 1813
    Receipt for two law books from 1813
  • Jenkins has resided at seven locations, starting with Independence Hall, in 1802.
    Jenkins has resided at seven locations, starting with Independence Hall, in 1802.
  • From 1876 - 1898, Jenkins' home was the Athenaeum of Philadelphia.
    From 1876 - 1898, Jenkins' home was the Athenaeum of Philadelphia.

1802
The Law Library Company of the City of Philadelphia is founded in 1802 by 71 attorneys, among whom were the most prominent of their time. They form a corporation in order to jointly purchase a collection of legal materials to practice law. Shares of stock in the company are sold for $20; annual dues are $2.

1805
William Rawle publishes the first law library catalog in the nation listing 391 titles.

1827
The Law Library Company of the City of Philadelphia merges with the Associated Members of the Bar and becomes known as the Law Association of Philadelphia.

1931
The library's name changes to the Law Library of the Philadelphia Bar Association.

1967
The Theodore F. Jenkins Memorial Law Library is established with court approval to carry out the provisions of the will of the late Madeleine Hart Jenkins. It was her wish that her late husband, Theodore Finley Jenkins, be memorialized in a manner that would benefit the Bar and the public.

1979
Jenkins installs a Westlaw terminal.

1990
We create our online catalog, Jenkins Automated Catalog (JAC).

1992
Jenkins again becomes a membership library. Dues are $50/year.

1996
The library develops the first version of its first website. We also begin offering hands-on research classes for CLE.

2002
Jenkins celebrates its 200th Anniversary.

2005
The library is renovated in order to meet the needs of 21st century legal research.

2011
Jenkins refreshes its website.

2013
Visitors to the Jenkins website can take a virtual tour, courtesy of Google Street View.

2016
The library's new website launches.
Solo memberships/renewals can be paid online.
Membership runs on a 12-month cycle instead of calendar year.

2017
Jenkins celebrates its 215th anniversary.