The Administration's 1935 Economic Security
Text of President Roosevelt's draft Social Security legislation.
House Hearing Report on 1935 Act
Full text of House Ways & Means Committee hearings.
Senate Hearing Report on 1935 Act
Full text of Senate Finance Committee hearings.
House Ways & Means Committee Report on 1935 Act
Full text of House report.
Congressional Debates on the 1935 Act
Full text of Senate and House floor debates on the 1935 Act.
Passage of the 1935 Act
Dates and vote tallies for passage of the Social Security Act of 1935
Main Provisions of the 1935 Act
Set of charts summarizing the major provisions of the law. (This is a quick and easy summary in "plain language," as contrasted with the formal legislative language of the original text of the law, which is provided in the next section.)
Text of 1935 Law
Full text of original 1935 Social Security Act.
1937 Supreme Court Rulings
Narrative essay on constitutionality of Social Security Act along with full text of 1937 Supreme Court rulings.
Other Legal Rulings
Other significant legal rulings.
A variety of background materials are available on the pivotal 1939 Amendments
Passage of the 1956 Social Security Amendments
Dates and vote tallies for passage of the 1956 legislation creating the Social Security disability program.
Legislative History of the Disability
House Ways & Means Committee legislative history of the disability program up through 1974.
1986 Disability History Report
This is an internally-produced, brief, SSA history of the Social Security and SSI disability programs up through January 1986.
1993 Savannah Disability Forum
In January 1993 SSA's Atlanta Regional Office sponsored a forum in which two former key SSA officials involved in the development of the disability program offered their oral reminiscences about the early history of the program.
Brief Essay on the Development of the
Disability Program, by Professor Edward D. Berkowitz
This essay was presented as testimony before the House Social Security Subcommittee on July 13, 2000.
Passage of the Medicare Program in 1965
Dates and vote tallies for passage of the Social Security Amendments of 1965 which introduced the Medicare program, as well as links to a signing photo and other materials.
President Johnson's Full Remarks
at Medicare Signing Ceremony
This is an audio recording of the Medicare signing ceremony. (Note: File is in RealAudio format.)
THE EVOLUTION OF MEDICARE . . . FROM IDEA TO LAW (1969) This highly-readable Research Report provides a survey of the development of the Medicare program in a larger historical context.
Papers from 1996 Conference on 30th
Anniversary of Medicare
In 1996 the Health Care Financing Administration held an academic conference at the LBJ Presidential Library in Austin, Texas to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the implementation of Medicare. These are the papers presented at that conference.
Legislative History of the Medicare
Program to 2000
This is a chronological list of the major changes in law governing various aspects of the Medicare program. It is taken from SSA's Annual Statistical Supplement. (Note: File in Adobe PDF format)
Legislative History of the SSI Program
This is a chronological list of the major changes in law governing various aspects of the SSI program. It is taken from SSA's Annual Statistical Supplement. (Note: File in Adobe PDF format)
CONGRESSIONAL VOTE TALLIES
A listing of the votes on final passage on the major Social Security legislation over the years. In each case, the recorded vote closest to the final version of the bill is the one reported. So if there was a recorded vote on a Conference Report, the vote tallies will be on the Conference Report as it represented the final version of the enacted legislation. In the absence of a recorded vote on a Conference Report, the recorded vote on final passage from each chamber is used as the closest available approximation to the position of the individual members on the legislation as enacted. In a few instances, no recorded vote was taken and so the tallies are necessarily incomplete.
1962 Welare Amendments
1972 Amendments (SSI)
1972 Amendments (COLAs)
1984 Disability Amendments
1996 Welfare Reform
Social Security Legislative Histories 1935-2004
This collection consists of the entire set of legislative histories (aka “Downey Books”) produced by the Office of Legislation and Congressional Affairs from 1935-2004.
CRS Legislative Histories 1935
Congressional Research Service summaries of Social Security Act legislative history.
Legislative History of the 1950 Amendments
Article by Wilbur Cohen and Robert Myers from October 1950 Social Security Bulletin
Legislative History of 1972 Amendments
Detailed account of the development and key provisions of the 1972 changes in Social Security and Medicare.
BRIEF Summary of the Provisions of the
The 1983 Amendments are an important milestone in the contemporary Social Security program.
DETAILED Summary of the Provisions of
the 1983 Amendments
More in-depth explanation of the provisions of the 1983 legislation.
Text of Current Law
Full text of current Social Security law.