Confederation to Constitution 1776-1790

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Building the New Nation Chapter 9 P. 166-188. Confederation to Constitution 1776-1790. DVD. Founding Fathers Volume 2 A Healthy Constitution. Aftermath of the Revolution 1781-1787. Effects of the Revolution Expansion of Democracy. Statehouse in 1778 Built 1730s
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Building the New Nation Chapter 9 P. 166-188 Confederation to Constitution1776-1790 DVD
  • Founding Fathers Volume 2
  • A Healthy Constitution
  • Aftermath of the Revolution1781-1787 Effects of the Revolution Expansion of Democracy
  • Statehouse in 1778
  • Built 1730s
  • Meeting place for PA colonial assembly
  • Witnessed much history
  • * Washington given command
  • of continental army
  • * Declaration of Independence
  • signed
  • * Constitution hammered out
  • Began to be called “Independence Hall” in
  • the 1820s.
  • Effects of the American Revolution
  • Did NOT suddenly, violently overturn an entire political and social structure
  • Instead it did accelerate the evolution
  • People continued to pray, marry, play
  • Most people were not seriously disturbed by fighting
  • Many in isolated communities scarcely knew war was on
  • Effects of the American Revolution
  • Striking changes
  • Social customs
  • States ended inheritance laws
  • Gender roles
  • Political institutions
  • Most states reduced property holding requirements for voting
  • Exodus of 80,000 Loyalists
  • Thus very few conservatives
  • Weakened aristocratic upper crust
  • Paved way for new patriot elites to emerge
  • Ideas about society
  • Cleared field for “leveling” ideas of unbridled democracy
  • Trade organizations stimulated democracy
  • Equality
  • Separation of church and state
  • New State Constitutions
  • 1776 Continental Congress
  • Asked states to draft new state constitutions
  • Based on republicanism
  • Sovereignty of new states rested on the
  • Authority of the people
  • Connecticut and Rhode Island retouched old charters
  • Massachusetts called special convention to draft a constitution then submitted it to people for ratification
  • Most states worked to capture democratic spirit of the age
  • State Constitutions
  • Features in common
  • Written
  • Fundamental law superior to transient whims of ordinary legislation
  • Bills of Rights
  • Annual election of legislators
  • Created weak executive and judicial branches
  • History of quarreling with king’s officials
  • Deep distrust of governors and arbitrary judges
  • Legislatures given sweeping power
  • In the states Shift of power to the west
  • Democratic character
  • Geographic shift
  • New state legislatures reflected presence of many western districts
  • Relocation of state capitals
  • New Hampshire from Portsmouth to CONCORD
  • New York from New York City to ALBANY
  • Virginia from Williamsburg to RICHMOND
  • North Carolina to RALEIGH
  • South Carolina from Charleston to COLUMBIA
  • Georgia from Savannah to ATLANTA
  • State Capitals Move West After the Declaration there was a relocation of state capitals away from the eastern seaboard cities reflecting the expansion of democracy. Economic Situation 1781-1787
  • States seized former lands of the crown
  • Cut into small farms thus accelerating democracy
  • Economic democracy preceded political democracy
  • Manufacturing stimulated by war
  • Mills at Brandywine Creek, Philadelphia
  • New commercial trade with
  • China and
  • Baltic Sea countries
  • Runaway inflation
  • Loyalist holdings were confiscated
  • Seizure of loyalist lands caused disrespect for private property and the law in general
  • Keen distaste for taxes
  • Hard times
  • Average citizen worse off at war’s end
  • Hopeful Signs after the Revolution
  • Thirteen states quite similar in
  • Government structure and function
  • Rich political inheritance
  • Partly from Britain
  • Partly from over 100 years of home grown
  • Self-government
  • Blessed with political leaders of a high order
  • George Washington
  • Thomas Jefferson
  • John Adams
  • James Madison
  • Alexander Hamilton
  • Ben Franklin
  • Evolution of Union 1643-present Articles of Confederation Second Continental Congress 1776 Articles of Confederation 1781-1787 Second Continental Congress 1776
  • Appointed a committee to draft a written constitution
  • Richard Henry Lee Resolution 1776
  • Required “A plan for confederation” to create a
  • Government of the new United States of America
  • Articles of Confederation 1781-1787
  • Adopted in 1777/Ratified in 1781
  • Created a weak national government to do the things the states could not do alone
  • Sent to states for ratification
  • All states must agree
  • Maryland held out until 1781
  • Issue of western lands
  • Congress promised to dispose of these for “common benefit”
  • Land Ordinances 1785, 1787
  • State constitutions had to be re-written to include the sentiments of the Declaration
  • Articles of Confederation 1781-1787
  • Debated for almost as many years as they
  • were in effect
  • Proposed in 1775
  • Not ratified until 1781
  • Eight years later, the
  • Constitution replaced them
  • Ratification of the Articles of Confederation 1781
  • Took four years
  • Each of the thirteen states had to ratify
  • Several states held claims to land west of the Appalachian mountains
  • States that did not hold these claims felt that the larger states were gaining too much power and refused to ratify the Articles
  • Eventually the larger states ceded their land claims to the national government and all of the states ratified the Articles of Confederation
  • Government under the Articles of Confederation 1781-1787
  • Loose confederation
  • League of friendship
  • Thirteen independent states joined to deal with common problems
  • Unicameral legislative body
  • Each state had one vote
  • Powers of the Confederation Congress
  • Declare war
  • Conduct foreign policy
  • Establish a postal system
  • Approval of 9 out of 13 states was needed to pass any national law
  • Approval of 13 out of 13 states was needed to amend the Articles
  • Confederation Congress could not
  • Collect taxes
  • Regulate trade
  • Coin money
  • Establish armed forces
  • Articles of Confederation 1781-1787 weaknesses strengths Good step toward ultimate constitution Sense of union Created a central authority Fundamental law of the land Congress Power to declare war Power to make treaties Run a postal service Deal with Indians Land ordinances
  • Congress
  • No power to tax
  • No power to regulate commerce
  • Two-thirds vote to pass a law
  • Each state one vote
  • No executive
  • No national courts
  • Unanimous vote to amend Articles
  • Successes under the Articles of Confederation
  • Won the War for Independence against Britain
  • Negotiated the Treaty of Paris 1783
  • Each state recognizedthe laws of other states
  • Sense of union
  • Good step toward ultimate constitution
  • Created a central authority
  • Fundamental law of the land
  • Land Ordinance of 1785
  • Northwest Ordinance 1787
  • Western Land Cessions to the United States 1782-1802 Land Ordinance 1785
  • Lands in the northwest
  • North of the Ohio River
  • South of the Great Lakes
  • East of the Mississippi River
  • Not < 3 states
  • Not > 5 states
  • Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan
  • Sold to pay off national debt
  • Surveyed before settlement
  • Divided into townships
  • Six square miles
  • 36 sections per township
  • One section for public schools
  • The Northwest Ordinance 1787
  • Process for governing the northwest territory
  • Set pattern for all future territories
  • Gave people settled in the northwest lands the right to organize their own governments
  • Citizens could ask to be admitted as new states with the same rights as the original thirteen
  • 60,000 people
  • Written constitution
  • Provided for public education
  • Forbade slavery in the new territories
  • It is important that the new United States gave new territories
  • Same rights as the original thirteen
  • Did not make them colonies of the United States
  • The Northwest 1785-1787 Surveying the Old Northwest United States 1787 Extent of American westward settlement in 1787 and the limits placed on that settlement by French and Spanish claims west of the Mississippi and in Florida. Plans for the creation of three to five states in the Northwest territory were approved by Congress in 1787, ensuring that the settlers in this region would enjoy the same political rights as the citizens of the original thirteen states. Main Centers of Spanish and British Influence After 1783
  • Independent in name only
  • * Especially West of
  • Appalachian Mountains
  • Not until 1803 with
  • Purchase of Louisiana
  • * Eliminated foreign influence
  • Problems under theArticles of Confederation
  • Congress
  • Had no money and no power to get it
  • Had no power to force a state to follow a national law
  • Could not force states to abide by their trade agreements with other nations
  • Could not regulate unfair trade among states
  • States
  • Argued about what was their fair share of the war debt and refused to pay
  • Loyalists
  • Discriminated against in some states and the
  • National government had no power to stop it
  • Background to a New ConstitutionShays Rebellion 1787
  • Massachusetts raised taxes to pay war debts
  • Daniel Shays
  • Captain in the Continental Army
  • Borrowed money to run his farm after the war
  • Increased taxes prevented him from paying his loans
  • Shays was offered two options
  • Go to debtors’ prison
  • Local court would seize his land
  • Shays went to the Massachusetts legislator to ask for more time to repay his loan
  • Massachusetts legislature did nothing to help
  • Shays’ Rebellion 1787
  • January, 1787
  • Led farmers whose properties were being foreclosed
  • Attempted to seize the state arsenal so that they could go on to burn Boston
  • Mobocracy
  • Governor called out the militia; had none
  • Hired mercenaries
  • Farmers went on to the state supreme court in Springfield
  • Wealthy citizens of Boston raised a private army to stop Shays
  • Militia fired on the farmers killing four
  • Americans
  • Horrified at the lawlessness in Massachusetts
  • Decided a stronger national government was needed to keep order
  • 1786-1787 Shays Rebellion Western Massachusetts stirred fear of anarchy Constitutional Convention1787 Virginia Plan New Jersey Plan Great Compromise Constitutional ConventionMay to September 1787
  • Congress authorized a meeting of delegates
  • To amend the Articles of Confederation
  • Delegates were a committee to provide recommendations to Congress as a whole
  • 55 delegates met in Philadelphia
  • Twelve states were represented
  • Rhode Island did not send delegates
  • Decision made to write a new constitution
  • Met in secret
  • To save the Revolution
  • Framers
  • Nationalists
  • Preserve the union
  • Avoid anarchy
  • Secure life and property
  • Curb unrestrained democracy
  • George Washington, VA
  • James Madison, VA
  • Benjamin Franklin, PA
  • Alexander Hamilton, NY
  • Edmund Randolph, VA
  • William Paterson, NJ
  • Framers in Agreement
  • Sound money
  • Protect private property
  • Strong government with
  • Three branches
  • Checks and balances
  • Manhood suffrage
  • Democracy was to be feared
  • Shays Rebellion
  • First draft of the Constitution with wide margins for notes
  • August 6, 1787
  • First draft of the Constitution was secretly printed in Philadelphia for the use of convention members.
  • Wide margins left room for additions and amendments, such as those made on this copy by Pierce Butler, the South Carolina delegate.
  • Note that in this early version the preamble does not yet read "We the people of the United States," but instead begins by listing the individual states.
  • Virginia Plan
  • James Madison’s plan for a
  • New form of government
  • Basis for discussion
  • Large state plan
  • Republicanism
  • Bicameral legislature
  • Representation based on population
  • Congress power to tax and regulate commerce
  • Executive branch to enforce laws
  • Judicial branch to rule on laws
  • James Madison New Jersey Plan
  • Small state plan
  • William Paterson
  • Unicameral legislature
  • Each state would have one vote in Congress
  • Power to tax
  • Power to regulate trade
  • Create an executive branch
  • Create a judicial branch
  • Great CompromiseConnecticut Compromise
  • Special committee to develop a solution
  • Bicameral legislature/two houses
  • Senate—upper house
  • Two seats per state
  • Selected by the state legislatures
  • House of Representatives—lower house
  • Number of seats based on population
  • All money bills originate
  • Strong chief executive
  • Inspired by MA/Shays Rebellion
  • Popularly elected
  • Commander-in-chief
  • Wide powers of appointment
  • Veto power over legislature
  • Compromise hotly debated
  • Passed by one vote
  • Roger Sherman Connecticut Ben Franklin Conflict over Slavery
  • Many delegates were opposed to slavery
  • Southern states depended on slave labor
  • Considered slaves to be property
  • Refused to ratify any form of government that would deny citizens the right to property
  • Three-fifths Compromise
  • Counting population for representation
  • For every 5 slaves count 3
  • Importation of slaves
  • No law prohibiting until 1808
  • Fugitive slaves
  • Escaped slaves must be returned to master
  • Postponed dealing with the issue to allow the union to get strong enough to deal with it
  • Would prove the most explosive question of all
  • Led to the worst social and political catastrophe in the nation’s history
  • Bundle of Compromises
  • Great compromise
  • Legislative branch
  • Electoral College
  • Election of the president
  • Three-fifths compromise
  • Slave trade
  • Powers to the central government
  • Role of the people
  • Safeguards Against the Mob
  • Federal judges appointed for life
  • Indirect election of the president
  • Electoral College
  • Indirect election of senators
  • Only in one case of one half of three branches did the people get a DIRECT vote
  • House of Representatives
  • Gouverneur Morris
  • Delegate from Pennsylvania
  • Spoke more frequently than
  • any other member
  • Principal draftsman of the
  • superbly written document
  • Wealthy conservative
  • Joined the revolutionary
  • movement
  • * With reluctance and
  • * To end the feared mob
  • Rising Sun Symbol at the Top of Washington’s Chair
  • Brass sun adorned the chair in which Washington sat during the Constitutional Convention
  • Pondering the symbol, Benjamin Franklin observed
  • “I have happiness to know it is a rising and not a setting sun.”
  • Democratic features
  • Two great principles of republicanism
  • Consent of the governed
  • Only legitimate basis for government
  • Powers of the government are limited by a
  • Written constitution
  • Virtue of people NOT authority of the state is
  • Ultimate guarantor of liberty, justice, order
  • “We the people”
  • Ringing affirmation of these republican doctrines
  • Ratification Federalists Anti-Federalists Ratification federalists Anti-Federalists Small republic Liberty safest Sovereignty of people resides in a one branch legislature Large government would be distant from the people Congress will tax heavily Supreme Court will overrule state courts President head of a large army
  • Large republic
  • Liberty is best protected
  • Sovereignty of people best served in a two branch legislature
  • Every branch represents the people
  • Doctrine of self-rule in a self-limiting system of checks and balances
  • The Federalist Papers Written under the pen name Publius Alexander Hamilton James Madison John Jay
  • Federalist and Antifederalist Strongholds, 1787-1790
  • Federalists
  • Primary backing from densely populated areas
  • Along major transportation routes, where trade, mobility, and frequent contact with people in other states
  • Encouraged a nationalistic identity.
  • Antifederalist
  • Support from interior regions
  • Geographic isolation bred a local perspective.
  • However
  • Some westerners Georgia and western Virginia, voted for a strong central government that would push back the Indians or the Spanish.
  • Rhode Island and North Carolina refused to ratify the Constitution until a Bill of Rights was included. The Struggle over Ratification Ratification of the Constitution
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