plan of government
a government in which the citizens rule through elected representatives
Articles of Confederation
America's first constitution; adopted in November 1777; Congress lacked power to impose tax, force citizens to join army, and regulate trade
single region of land created by Northwest Ordinance of 1787 located north of the Ohio River and east of the Mississippi River; land divided into 3 to 5 smaller territories that, when reached a population of 60,000, could apply for statehood
fall in value
Philadelphia merchant; 1781 - proposed a 5 percent tax on imported goods to help pay national debt - Rhode Island opposed
1785 - Congress sent him to London to discuss difficulties with Britain regarding tradeand occupation in America
a period when economic activity slow and unemployment rates increase
former Continental Army catptain - Saratoga, Bunker Hill, Ticonderoga; Jan 1787 - led more than 1,000 farmerms toward federal arsenal in Springfield, Massachusetts; four rebels killed; lost - captured
frightened many Americans; worried government couldd not control unrest and prevent violence
George Washington about Shays's Rebellion
"mankind, when left to themselves, are unfit for their own government"
Thomas Jefferson about Shays's Rebellion
"A little rebellion, now and then, is a good thing"
the freeing of individual enslaved persons
Virginia planter; father of Consitution; came up with Virginia plan but Randolph propsed it
New York lawyer; proposed calling a convention in Philadelphia to discuss trade issues; also suggested that convetion consider what changes were needed to make "the Constitution of the Federal Government adequate to the exigencies [needs] of the Union."
corresponding in size
proposed by Edmund Randolph; based on works of James Madison; called for two-house legislature, cheif executive branch chosen by legislature, and court system; lower house of legislautre elected by people, upper house elected by lower house; representation in legislature based on state population; known as "big state plan"
New Jersey Plan
William Patterson; one house legislature; one vote per state; changed Articles - weak executive branch, Congress could set taxes and regulate trade; known as "little state plan"
Connecticut; created Great Compromise
two-house legislature; lower house, House of Reps, based on population, upper house, Senate - two seats per state
agreement between two or more sides in which each side gives up some of what it wants
Enslaved persons would be worth 3/5 a person in taxation and representation
"I consent to this Constitution because I expect no better, and because I am not sure, that it is not the best."
movement of 1700s that promoted knowledge, reason, and science as means to improve society
Two Treatises of Civil Government - government based on agreement between people and ruler; all people have natural rights: life, liberty, property
Baron de Montesquieu
The Spirit of Laws - powers of government should be separated and balanced against each other
sharing of power between the federal and state governments
headed by president; carries out nation's laws and policies
presidential electors; cast their votes for president and vice president
checks and balances
the three branches of government have roles that check, or limit, the others so that no single branch can dominate the government
supporters of Constitution
opposers of Constitution
Mercy Otis Warren
antifederalist; "We have struggled for liberty and made costly sacrifices... and there are still many among us who [value liberty] too much to relinquish.. the rights of man for the dignity of government"
antifederalist; said Constitution limited power of federal government