Of all professionals, lawyers are the most dependent on books. All of their resource material is in written form. To know the quality of the practicing bar, the bench, legal studies, and legal scholarship in general, one must know the books on which they are founded. A census of law books present in the libraries of colonial Virginians can shed some light on the law and the lawyers who shaped the colony and the nation.
W. Hamilton Bryson, Law Books in the Libraries of Colonial Virginians, in “Esteemed Bookes of Lawe” and the Legal Culture of Early Virginia (Warren M. Billings & Brent Tarter eds., 2017).