Stanley Elkins and Eric McKitrick

in The Age of Federalism

Published in print March 1995 | ISBN: 9780195093810
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780199854127 | DOI:

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This chapter discusses the ratification of the new Constitution of the United States and the role several people played during the process including the first President of the United States, George Washington. The Continental Congress did its last business on October 10th, 1788, and went out of existence forever. The change was not “revolutionary” in any obvious sense; it had occurred without upheaval. The initial call for a constitutional convention had been represented as being merely “for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation,” not of doing away with them. When the Convention did meet, its sessions were conducted in utter secrecy, by delegates from twelve of the thirteen states. The procedure for ratifying the new Constitution was cleverly devised and quite outside legal boundaries, as the law then stood. However, there was a formidable anti-federalist opposition.

Keywords: Constitution; United States; George Washington; Continental Congress; constitutional convention; anti-federalist opposition; ratification

Chapter.  24978 words. 

Subjects: History of the Americas

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