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Society of Cincinnati

exclusive hereditary order. were ridiculed by most Americans. created by the Continental Army of officers.

Virginia Statue for Relious Freedom

Measure enacted by the Virginia legislature prohibiting state support for religious institutions and reconizing freedom of worship. Served as a model for the religious clause of the first amendment of the Constitution.

Civic virtue

Willingness on the part of citizens to sacrifice personal self-interest for the public good. Deemed a necessary component of a successful republic.

Republican Motherhood

The idea that American women had a special responsibility to cultivate "civic virtue" in their children

Articles of Confederation

this document, the nations first constitution, was adopted by the second continental congress in 1781during the revolution. the document was limited because states held most of the power, and congress lacked the power to tax, regulate trade, or control coinage

Land Ordinance of 1785

A major success of the Articles of Confederation. Provided for the orderly surveying and distribution of land belonging to the U.S.

Northwest ordinance of 1787

Created the Northwest Territory (area north of the Ohio River and west of Pennsylvania), established conditions for self-government and statehood, included a Bill of Rights, and permanently prohibited slavery

Shays Rebellion

this conflict in Massachusetts caused many to criticize the Articles of Confederation and admit the weak central government was not working; uprising led by Daniel Shays in an effort to prevent courts from foreclosing on the farms of those who could not pay the taxes

Alexander Hamilton

Hamilton emerged as a major political figure during the debate over the Constitution, as the outspoken leader of the Federalists and one of the authors of the Federalist Papers.

James Madison

The fourth President of the United States (1809-1817). A member of the Continental Congress (1780-1783) and the Constitutional Convention (1787), he strongly supported ratification of the Constitution and was a contributor to The Federalist Papers (1787-1788), which argued the effectiveness of the proposed constitution. His presidency was marked by the War of 1812.

Virginia Plan

Initial proposal at the Constitutional Convention made by the Virginia delegation for a strong central government with a bicameral legislature dominated by the big states.

New jersey plan

Opposite of the Virginia Plan, it proposed a single-chamber congress in which each state had one vote. This created a conflict with representation between bigger states, who wanted control befitting their population, and smaller states, who didn't want to be bullied by larger states.

Great Compromise

Compromise made by Constitutional Convention in which states would have equal representation in one house of the legislature and representation based on population in the other house

Electoral College

a certain number of electors from each state proportional to and seemingly representative of that state's population. Each elector chooses a candidate believing they are representing their constituency's choice. The candidate who receives a higher proportion of electoral votes within a state receives all the electoral votes for that state.

Three- Fifths Compromise

the agreement by which the number of each state's representatives in Congress would be based on a count of all the free people plus three-fifths of the slaves

Anti-Federalists

opponents of a strong central government who campaigned against the ratification of the Constitution in favor of a confederation of independant states

Federalists

Proponents of the 1787 Constitution, they favored a strong national government, arguing that the checks and blances in the new Constitution would safeguard the people's liberties.

Federalist papers

Series of essays that defended the Constitution and tried to reassure Americans that the states would not be overpowered by the federal government.

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