A legislative history includes all of the documents produced while a bill is being considered by Congress. Possible materials include different bill versions, committee hearings, committee prints, House and Senate documents, committee reports, and floor debates contained in the Congressional Record. Researchers look into the legislative history of statutes in order to discern the intent of Congress. Sometimes, this information is used in court to help interpret statutes that are not clear. A compiled legislative history has all of the related documents pulled together in one place. If a compiled legislative history is available, it is always a good idea to use it since it will save you time in tracking down the needed documents.
Individual documents can be found on Lexis and Westlaw, although not all date ranges are represented on these databases.Materials can also be found for free on govinfo.gov as well as Congress.gov. Documents are also available through the United States Congressional Serial Set available on microfiche in the Library as well as on HeinOnline.