Website Review: TaxHistory.org

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TaxHistory.org home pageScreenshot of TaxHistory.org web site

Where: http://www.taxhistory.org/

Who: Tax Analysts, Virginia

What: US Tax Law History

Overview: TaxHistory.org offers free access to historical tax documents, including copies of Form 1040 starting in 1913, the Federalist papers, and presidential tax returns. You can also find articles and commentary on events surrounding tax legislation, and sign up for a newsletter.

Highlights

  • Site use is free, and you’re not required to register or provide personal information.
  • The site loads quickly, has a simple, eye-pleasing layout, and is easy to navigate.
  • The on-site search engine is robust, and easy to use.
  • The site has been on line since 1995, and is updated on a regular basis.

Potential Drawbacks

  • The site does not offer a comprehensive history, and there are gaps in coverage. The last archived Form 1040 is from 2006.
  • The site is strictly a historical project. You won’t find interpretations of tax law, past or present.
  • Cartoons and commentary are subject to selection and editorial bias.

Opinion: TaxHistory.org is an interesting diversion, with content that underscores how little tax arguments change over the years. Practitioners looking for a quick history lesson of US taxation on a macro basis or the origins of certain revenue doctrines will find a simplified version here.

Taxing Lessons Final Grade: B

Review Policy Disclosure: Taxing Lessons receives no compensation for web site reviews and has no affiliation with the reviewed sites.

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