UPDATE YOUR JOURNAL
In your Table of Contents:
Page 62-63 Articles of Confederation
After the end of the war, the founding fathers needed a plan for our country and they needed one FAST!
Many feared creating a strong central government would threaten their rights.
They created a “league of friendship” called the
Articles of Confederation.
It created a loose group of 13 independent states, NOT a UNITED 13 States.
THE FIRST WRITTEN PLAN OF GOVERNMENT IN
State governments were stronger than the national
Could not collect taxes or enforce laws
Could not regulate trade between states
State and national govt’s created their own money…14 different currencies!
No national court system
No chief executive (president)
No national army or navy
One state one vote in Congress
Required all 13 to pass amendments
Land given to America in the Treaty of Paris was causing problems.
Settlers were moving onto land and disputes broke out.
These disputes clogged the courts.
Passed the Land Ordinance of 1785. It organized the
Northwest Territory into smaller territories.
It divided the land into townships.
Now the problem was what to do with them. Would they be colonies or states?
Created rules for the new territory to become future states.
Once a territory had 5000 settlers, they could form a government. have
60,000 free citizens to become a state.
Under the AOC, there were serious money problems.
• These problems were hardest on farmers.
• Judges ordered farmers in
Massachusetts to sell their land and livestock to pay off debts.
Daniel Shays led an uprising of debt ridden
Massachusetts farmers against the Mass. Govt.
There was no national govt. or army to stop the rebellion
Finally stopped by a militia.
The weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation led to the realization that a new government must be created.
A monument erected in 1987 to commemorate Shay’s Rebellion bears the following line in its inscription:
"True Liberty and Justice may require resistance to law."
Why would this line be included in the monument’s inscription?
Respond to this question in your journal under yesterday’s closing:
Why would the idea of poor farmers rebelling be scary to many of the men working to create a new government for the United States?
After Shay’s Rebellion, a convention was called to discuss “the situation of the United States”
Issues to be debated
Should we create a Strong or Weak Federal
Will the new government continue the “one state one vote” or will it be based upon population?
What will we do about the Slavery issue…?
When? May 25, 1787
Who? 55 delegates: federalists, antifederalists and James
What? Our founding fathers came together to write the
About half were lawyers
Others were farmers, merchants, and doctors
¾ had been representatives in the Constitutional Convention.
These delegates are what we call “The Founding Fathers”
James Madison – called the Father of the Constitution because of his preparation and participation in it’s creation.
Legislative branch has one houses
House has one state/one vote
Supported by smaller states
Legislative branch had two houses
House based on population
Supported by larger states
Three branches of government
Unable to come to any sort of agreement, a committee met and came up with a compromise.
It set the government up as follows:
3 branches of government
2 houses in Legislative branch
House of Representatives based on population
Senate – 2 votes per state (equality)
Slaves should count for taxation = property
Slaves should NOT count towards taxation.
Slaves should NOT count as citizens for
Slaves should count for representation.
Because the issue of slavery was preventing the ratification (approval) of the Constitution, the delegates came up with yet another compromise.
In the 3/5ths Compromise, slaves would count as
3/5 of a person for population counts when setting taxes and representation. 5 slaves = 3 people
Although they reach a compromise for the
Constitution, the North and South still did not agree on the issue of slavery.
Slavery will continue to be a widely debated topic for many more years.
Federalists – DEBATED FOR RATIFICATION
Strong Central Government
Powerful Executive Branch
To ratify the Constitution AS WRITTEN.
James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, John Jay
Anti-Federalists – AGAINST RATIFICATION
Wanted stronger states (state’s rights)
More people’s rights
DEMANDED BILL OF RIGHTS BE ADDED TO
PROTECT PEOPLE FROM THE
Thought the proposed constitution didn’t do enough to ensure people’s rights.
Patrick Henry and George Mason
Federalists wrote a series of newspaper essays pointing out the weaknesses of the Articles of
The states each hold conventions to vote on whether or not to ratify (approve) the
The first states ratify it in December 1787 .
The last state doesn’t ratify the constitution until
Now, the British Colonies are officially
The UNITED States of America!
At the same time that seven of the states ratified the Constitution, they asked that it be amended to include a bill of rights.
Why? They believed it was needed to protect people against the power of the national government.
What? These amendments gave certain rights
(unalienable rights) specifically to the people of the US and to the states.
Q: In your own words, explain why you think that the Antifederalists felt that it was absolutely necessary for the Bill of Rights to be added to the
Constitution? If you had to live during this time, what would your stance have been? Why?