Creating an Archive: Responding to the 2020 Pandemic

Red Cross workers prepare medical supplies in NYC, 1920
Turning out medical supplies at 82nd and Amsterdam Avenue, New York City, 1920.

HSoftheNYCourts Responds

We all have had to rethink our day-to-day lives, both personally and professionally. As we adjust to social distancing, we find that there are important lessons to be learned about how we communicate as an organization…and also as a people. The Historical Society of the New York Courts is now confronting this issue in its own mission.

We’re unable to gather at our programs and events as we’d like in this new normal. How to continue our dialogue with you? We have a few ideas.

Read more in our Message from the Executive Director.

Live Webinars

Podcasts & Videocasts 

NYC Criminal Court Virtual Arraignment

HSoftheNYCourts is working with the Unified Court System and local bar leaders across the State to record the experiences of judges and lawyers during the 2020 pandemic. These projects are in the early stages, and we look forward to bringing you updates in the coming weeks.

You can find other HSoftheNYCourts podcasts and videocasts on diverse topics related to NYS legal history here.

NYS Courts’ Amici Podcast

Marilyn Marcus was recently featured in the Unified Court System’s Amici Podcast with John Caher to discuss our important project Dispensing Justice from a Distance: Journal of the NYS Courts During the 2020 Pandemic.

Distance Teaching During the Pandemic: Education Podcasts
The audience listens intently to a Society program.

During the pandemic, HSoftheNYCourts is also committed to bringing you moments of pause in your inbox. Here, we bring NYS legal history to you to take your mind of the monumental times in which we find ourselves. For more information on these series, visit Moments Of Pause in Your Inbox. 

Court of Appeals Richardson Courtroom 1800s
The Court of Appeals' Richardson Courtroom, originally in the State Capitol, c. 1910

NYS Unified Court System Responds

Chief Judge Janet DiFiore’s Messages

Chief Judge Janet DiFiore

Hon. Jonathan Lippman Spearheads Statewide Pro Bono Effort

Chief Judge Janet DiFiore and the NYS Court System partnered with the New York State Bar Association to create a pro bono network of lawyers across NYS for the anticipated surge in legal matters surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. Judge Lippman will lead this effort.

Unemployment Insurance: On April 11, Governor Cuomo introduced the first iteration of the pro bono network’s response. In it, volunteer attorneys assisted New Yorkers in understanding unemployment insurance benefits and the application process.

Probate in the Surrogate’s Court: On May 14, a new iteration launched. Lawyers will provide free legal representation on probate and estate proceedings to the families of New Yorkers who passed away due to COVID-related causes.

COVID-19 Pro Bono Recovery Task Force

Administrative Orders, Court Orders, and Memorandums

Additional Information

For additional information on court operation during the COVID-19 pandemic, including virtual courts, bar exams, and bar admissions, please visit

Product added to cart

No products in the cart.