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APUSH Chapter 9 Terms: The Confederation and the Constitution
The American Pageant-AP Edition By Kennedy/Cohen
Terms in this set (19)
Articles of Confederation
The first Constitution of the U.S. from 1781-1788. The Articles established a loose confederation of largely independent states with limited powers vested in the central government. It set up a national legislature called Congress, consisting of delegates from the states. Each state had one vote in Congress, regardless of its size or population. Reflecting the Americans distrust of centralized authority, the Articles gave the central government no power to levy or collect taxes, regulate interstate commerce, or interfere with the states. There was no national executive or president and no supreme court. The few powers assigned to Congress included declaration of war and peace, maintenance of an army, and coinage of money. Amending the Articles required a unanimous vote of Congress.
After the Treaty of Paris, England still held posts along the Canadian border that she refused to leave. The British had hoped to keep control of the fur trade and force the U.S. to pay British creditors. The posts held included Detroit and Niagara.
Western Land Cession 1781
Maryland demanded that the U.S. government have control over all western lands. Maryland postponed her ratification of the Articles until all states (especially Virginia) complied because she feared large states would become too powerful. The land given to the U.S. government was for public domain (complete ownership of land by the public).
Land Ordinance 1785
This law stated that the U.S. government would sell, at auction, western lands for a minimum $1 per acre. The profit would be used to pay off the national debt. The public domain was surveyed into township systems that were six square miles. Each township was divided into 36 one-square mile sections. One section equaled 640 acres.
Shay's Rebellion 1786
Captain Daniel Shays led back-country farmers in a rebellion because many people were losing their farms through mortgage foreclosures and tax delinquencies. Farmers demanded cheaper paper money, lighter taxes and a suspension of mortgage foreclosures. The rebellion ended when troops broke up Shay's mob in Boston.
Northwest Ordinance of 1787
This law provided that the area north of Ohio be divided into three to five territories, and allowed a territory to have a governor, secretary, three judges, and a legislature in inhabited by 5,000 white males. The territory could apply to the U.S. government for statehood if it had 60,000 white males.
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.
He was a conservative delegate from New York who attended the Philadelphia Convention. He advocated a very powerful central government. Along with James Madison and John Jay, he wrote the Federalist Papers urging approval of the Constitution. Appointed as the first secretary of the treasury in 1789 by President Washington, Hamilton was responsible for creating the First Bank of the U.S. He sought to encourage the growth of manufacturing in the new nation and put it on a sound monetary basis. Hamilton's Financial Plan consisted of federal assumption of all debts, including state and federal debts and the chartering of the first U.S. Bank to help restore American credit. As the leader of the Federalist party that advocated a strong federal government, he stated that the future of the U.S. would be in industry and manufacturing
He was a delegate from Virginia and was considered the "Father of the Constitution."
This plan, written by James Madison, 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 a 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.
This plan was a compromise between the Virginia and New Jersey Plans. It formed a bicameral legislature that consisted of the House of Representatives (representation based on state population) and the Senate (which had two representatives from each state). It also made money bills start in the House.
This college is made up of people chosen by state legislatures (each state receives the same number of electors as it has total senators and representatives). Electors choose the two best people for president.
A compromise at the Constitutional Convention between northern states and southern states on how slaves were to be counted for direct taxation and representation in the House of Representatives. The South believed that slaves should be considered as persons in determining population but as property in determining taxes; the North held the opposite view. The compromise provided that "three-fifths" of all slaves would be added to the number of free persons in determining the population of a state for purposes of representation and taxation.
The Bill of Rights
These are the first ten amendments to the Constitution and enumerated the rights of men protected under the Constitution.
They were usually wealthy, educated, property owning men, who believed in a strong, centralized federal government, and supported the 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. Hamilton was the leader of the party.
Led by Jefferson, this loose alliance of politicians and citizens supported strong state governments and opposed ratification of the Constitution. Anti-federalists agreed that the proposed Constitution would give the national government too much power. They felt that the state governments would become weak and the national government too removed from local conditions, resulting in a loss of freedom. Despite their defeat, they prevailed in the matter of securing a set of amendments guaranteeing individual liberties, the Bill of Rights.
Loose and Strict Construction
Loose constructionists (like Alexander Hamilton) believed that Congress could use the Elastic Clause to establish government programs. Hamilton used the loose construction argument effectively in establishing a national bank. The strict constructionists (including Jefferson) believed that the Elastic Clause could not be used to create the U.S. Bank and were against giving Congress any more power than what was directly stated in the Constitution.
U.S. Constitution 1789
The document that establishes the rights and liberties of the American people. It created a federal government of three branches---legislative, judicial, and executive. It separates powers among the three branches and establishes a system of checks and balances among them and defines the distribution of power between the federal government and the states.
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