The Government Printing Office offers the Statutes at Large for 1961 (Volume 65) through 2011 (Volume 125) at www.gpo.gov/fdsys/browse/collection.action?collectionCode=STATUTE.
The Law Library of Congress has digitized the Statutes at Large from Volumes 1 through 64 and directs readers to the GPO for the remainder through Volume 125 at www.loc.gov/law/help/statutes-at-large/. The Constitution Society has an unofficial set of the Statutes at Large for 1789-99 (Volume 1) through 2015 (Volume 129) at www.constitution.org/uslaw/sal/sal.htm, plus statutes relating to the income tax from 1917 (Volume 41) through 1954 (Volume 68A).
Why do the Statutes at Large matter? Title 1, U.S. Code section 112 provides, with added bold:
The United States Statutes at Large shall be legal evidence of laws, concurrent resolutions, treaties, international agreements other than treaties, proclamations by the President, and proposed or ratified amendments to the Constitution of the United States therein contained, in all the courts of the United States, the several States, and the Territories and insular possessions of the United States.
Following this directive, the Court of Claims held:
errors do occur in codification and where there is a conflict between the codification and the Statutes at Large, the Statutes at Large must prevail. We held in American Export Lines, Inc. v. United States, 153 Ct. Cl. 201, 207, 290 F. 2d 925, 929 (1961):
It is well settled that "the Code cannot prevail over the Statutes at Large when the two are inconsistent." * * *
Abell v. United States, 207 Ct. Cl. 207, 221-22, 518 F.2d 1369, 1376-77 (1975). Lest there be any misunderstanding, 1 U.S.C. § 204(a) provides that the U.S. Code and any supplement "establish prima facie the laws of the United States." An exception exists for the titles of the Code "enacted into positive law." Id. A list of titles enacted into positive law appears in the history following 1 U.S.C. § 204 and at the beginning volume of each title.
Now that the Statutes at Large are available online, federal research can easily include a check for variances between the U.S. Code and the Statutes at Large. A variance can sometimes win the case or reveal the benefit of a quick settlement.