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Flash cards to study for APUSH (I acknowledge I did not write these answers)

Philadelphia Convention, 1787

Delegates from all states but Georgia met in Philadelphia to discuss the Articles of Confederation. This convention resulted in a new constitution. All 55 delegates represented the propertied upper class and most were personally interested in creating a strong central government.

George Washington

He was unanimously elected chairman of the convention. He was respected as "the sword of the Revolution," and served to quiet overheated tempers.

Alexander Hamilton

He was a conservative delegate from New York who attended the Philadelphia Convention. He was only 32 years old and advocated a very powerful central government.

James Madison

He was a delegate from Virginia and was considered the "Father of the Constitution." He wrote out the Virginia Plan and kept a detailed diary during the convention.

Virginia Plan

This plan, written by James Madison and introduced by Edmund Randolph, called for the establishment of a national government. It specified a bicameral legislature with membership proportional to population, voting in the legislature by individuals, and a president and courts chosen by the legislature.

New Jersey Plan

This plan was William Paterson's counterproposal to the Virginia Plan. It enlarged the powers of Congress to include the right to levy taxes, and regulate commerce. It defined congressional laws and treaties as the "supreme law of the land," and it had separate executive and judicial branches.

Great Compromise (or the "Connecticut Compromise")

This plan was a compromise between the Virginia and the New Jersey Plans. It formed a bicameral legislature that consisted of the House of Representatives (representation based upon state population) and the Senate (which had two representatives from each state). It also made money bills start from the House.

James Wilson

He thought up the idea of the Constitution's Executive Branch. He made the decision to have the Electoral College elect the President.

Electoral College

This college is made up of people chosen by state legislators (each state receives the same number of electors as it had total senators and representatives). Electors choose the two best people for president.

Three-fifths Compromise

This compromise pacified the North and South. It stated that the South could count 5 slaves for 3 whites in population, but, in return, the South would have to pay 3/5 more taxes. It also made the slave trade illegal after 1808.

Bill of Rights

George Mason (Virginia) was "The Father of [this]." These are the first 10 amendments added to the Constitution and enumerated the rights of men. Mason refused to sign the Constitution until these rights were added to the Constitution.


They were usually wealthy, educated, property owning men, who believed in a strong, centralized federal government, and supported the new Constitution. They included planters and merchants and were concentrated along the seaboard where they could use their political power to persuade congressmen to their position. These people supported the ratification of the new Constitution.

Implied powers, "Elastic Clause," "Necessary & Proper Clause"; broad construction

This was an ambiguous power of the Federal Government that stated, "Congress can do what's proper and necessary."

1. Loose construction 2. strict construction

1. Believed that Congress could use the Elastic Clause to establish government programs. Hamilton used this argument effectively in establishing a national bank. 2. Believed that the Elastic Clause could not be used to create the US Bank and were against giving Congress any more power.

Federalist Papers by "Publius"

This book was made up of 85 essays that were written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay. THey were passed out as essays to support the ratification of the Constitution.

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