New York (state)

New YorkNYNew York State
New York remained the national capital under the new constitution until 1790, and was the site of the inauguration of President George Washington, the drafting of the United States Bill of Rights, and the first session of the United States Supreme Court. Hamilton's revival of the heavily indebted United States economy after the war and the creation of a national bank significantly contributed to New York City becoming the financial center of the new nation. Both the Dutch and the British imported African slaves as laborers to the city and colony; New York had the second-highest population of slaves after Charleston, South Carolina.

United States Constitution

ConstitutionU.S. Constitutionconstitutional
The United States Bill of Rights consists of 10 amendments added to the Constitution in 1791, as supporters of the Constitution had promised critics during the debates of 1788. The English Bill of Rights (1689) was an inspiration for the American Bill of Rights. Both require jury trials, contain a right to keep and bear arms, prohibit excessive bail and forbid "cruel and unusual punishments". Many liberties protected by state constitutions and the Virginia Declaration of Rights were incorporated into the Bill of Rights. Neither the Convention which drafted the Constitution, nor the Congress which sent it to the thirteen states for ratification in the autumn of 1787, gave it a lead caption.


DEState of DelawareDel.
Pennsylvania (north). New Jersey (east).


KYCommonwealth of KentuckyKentuckian
The other two states officially called "commonwealths" are Massachusetts and Pennsylvania. Kentucky is one of only five states that elects its state officials in odd-numbered years (the others being Louisiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, and Virginia). Kentucky holds elections for these offices every 4 years in the years preceding Presidential election years. Thus, Kentucky held gubernatorial elections in 2011 and 2015. The executive branch is headed by the governor who serves as both head of state and head of government. The lieutenant governor may or may not have executive authority depending on whether the person is a member of the Governor's cabinet.

U.S. state

One notable example is the case New Jersey v. New York, in which New Jersey won roughly 90% of Ellis Island from New York in 1998. States may be grouped in regions; there are many variations and possible groupings. Many are defined in law or regulations by the federal government. For example, the United States Census Bureau defines four statistical regions, with nine divisions. The Census Bureau region definition is "widely used … for data collection and analysis," and is the most commonly used classification system.


VACommonwealth of VirginiaVa.
James Madison drafted the Virginia Plan in 1787 and the Bill of Rights in 1789. Virginia ratified the Constitution on June 25, 1788. The three-fifths compromise ensured that Virginia, with its large number of slaves, initially had the largest bloc in the House of Representatives. Together with the Virginia dynasty of presidents, this gave the Commonwealth national importance. In 1790, both Virginia and Maryland ceded territory to form the new District of Columbia, though the Virginian area was retroceded in 1846.


MACommonwealth of MassachusettsMass.
The Pennsylvania Gradual Abolition Act of 1780 made Pennsylvania the first state to abolish slavery by statute.) Later, Adams was active in early American foreign affairs and succeeded Washington as the second United States President. His son John Quincy Adams, also from Massachusetts, would go on to become the sixth United States President. From 1786 to 1787, an armed uprising, known as Shays' Rebellion led by Revolutionary War veteran Daniel Shays wrought havoc throughout Massachusetts and ultimately attempted to seize the Federal armory. The rebellion was one of the major factors in the decision to draft a stronger national constitution to replace the Articles of Confederation.

Mid-Atlantic (United States)

Mid-AtlanticMid-Atlantic regionmid-Atlantic states
The New York and New Jersey campaign during the American Revolutionary War saw more battles than any other theater of the conflict. Philadelphia, midway between the northern and southern colonies, was home to the Continental Congress, the convention of delegates who organized the American Revolution. The same city was the birthplace of the Declaration of Independence in 1776 and the United States Constitution in 1787, while the United States Bill of Rights was drafted and ratified, and the first Supreme Court of the United States sat for the first time, in the first capital under the Constitution at New York City.

List of colonial governors of New Jersey

Royal GovernorGovernor of New JerseyRoyal Governor of New Jersey
The newly formed State of New Jersey elected William Livingston as its first governor on 31 August 1776—a position to which he would be reelected until his death in 1790. New Jersey was one of the original Thirteen Colonies, and was the third colony to ratify the constitution forming the United States of America. It thereby was admitted into the new federation as a state on 18 December 1787. On 20 November 1789 New Jersey became the first state to ratify the Bill of Rights. New Netherland (Dutch: Nieuw-Nederland) was the seventeenth-century colonial province of the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands and the Dutch West India Company.

Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution

Fourteenth Amendment14th AmendmentFourteenth
While many state constitutions are modeled after the United States Constitution and federal laws, those state constitutions did not necessarily include provisions comparable to the Bill of Rights. In Barron v. Baltimore (1833), the Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the Bill of Rights restrained only the federal government, not the states. However, the Supreme Court has subsequently held that most provisions of the Bill of Rights apply to the states through the Due Process Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment under a doctrine called "incorporation." Whether incorporation was intended by the amendment's framers, such as John Bingham, has been debated by legal historians.

Constitution of New Jersey

state constitutionconstitutionNew Jersey Constitution
Law of New Jersey. John Farmer Jr., he served as Acting Governor of New Jersey for 90 minutes on January 8, 2002. State constitution (United States). Governors of New Jersey. Current Constitution on the State Legislature's site. Proceedings of the 1947 NJ Constitutional Convention. New Jersey State Treasury.

Twenty-seventh Amendment to the United States Constitution

Twenty-seventh Amendment27th Amendment27th Amendment to the United States Constitution
New Jersey – May 7, 1992 (After rejection – November 20, 1789 ). 41. Illinois – May 12, 1992. 42. California – June 26, 1992. 43. Rhode Island – June 10, 1993 (After rejection – June 7, 1790 ). 44. Hawaii – April 29, 1994. 45. Washington – April 6, 1995. 46. Nebraska – April 1, 2016. List of amendments to the United States Constitution. List of proposed amendments to the United States Constitution. United States Bill of Rights. National Archives: Bill of Rights including Twenty-seventh Amendment. Library of Congress Bill of Rights Primary Documents links page. Congressional resolutions recognizing ratification:. Certification of the 27th Amendment at National Archives Online Public Access.

Congressional Apportionment Amendment

Article OneArticle Ifirst proposed amendment
- valign="top". style="width:4%;" |. 1) New Jersey: November 20, 1789. 2) Maryland: December 19, 1789. 3) North Carolina: December 22, 1789. 4) South Carolina: January 19, 1790. 5) New Hampshire: January 25, 1790. 6) New York: February 24, 1790. 7) Rhode Island: June 7, 1790. 8) Pennsylvania: September 21, 1791 (after rejecting it on March 10, 1790). 9) Virginia: November 3, 1791. 10) Vermont: November 3, 1791. 11) Kentucky: June 27, 1792. [[Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution#Apportionment of representation in House of Representatives|Section 2 of the Fourteenth Amendment]] (superseding Article I, Section 2, Clause 3, which includes the Three-Fifths Compromise).


New YorkManhattan, New YorkNew York County
The military center for the colonists was established in New Jersey. British occupation lasted until November 25, 1783, when George Washington returned to Manhattan, as the last British forces left the city. From January 11, 1785, to the fall of 1788, New York City was the fifth of five capitals of the United States under the Articles of Confederation, with the Continental Congress meeting at New York City Hall (then at Fraunces Tavern). New York was the first capital under the newly enacted Constitution of the United States, from March 4, 1789, to August 12, 1790, at Federal Hall.

Second Amendment to the United States Constitution

Second Amendment2nd AmendmentSecond
In March 1785, delegates from Virginia and Maryland assembled at the Mount Vernon Conference to fashion a remedy to the inefficiencies of the Articles of Confederation. The following year, at a meeting in Annapolis, Maryland, 12 delegates from five states (New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Virginia) met and drew up a list of problems with the current government model.

First Amendment to the United States Constitution

First AmendmentFirstU.S. Const. amend. I
After several years of comparatively weak government under the Articles of Confederation, a Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia proposed a new constitution on September 17, 1787, featuring among other changes a stronger chief executive. George Mason, a Constitutional Convention delegate and the drafter of Virginia's Declaration of Rights, proposed that the Constitution include a bill of rights listing and guaranteeing civil liberties.

Supreme Court of the United States

Supreme CourtUnited States Supreme CourtU.S. Supreme Court
Under the White and Taft Courts (1910–30), the Court held that the Fourteenth Amendment had incorporated some guarantees of the Bill of Rights against the states (Gitlow v. New York), grappled with the new antitrust statutes (Standard Oil Co. of New Jersey v. United States), upheld the constitutionality of military conscription (Selective Draft Law Cases) and brought the substantive due process doctrine to its first apogee (Adkins v. Children's Hospital).

Establishment Clause

establishment of religionEstablishment Clause of the First Amendmentestablishment
The Establishment Clause was based on a number of precedents, including the Constitutions of Clarendon, the Bill of Rights 1689, and the Pennsylvania and New Jersey colonial constitutions. An initial draft by John Dickinson was prepared in conjunction with his drafting the Articles of Confederation. In 1789, then-congressman James Madison prepared another draft which, following discussion and debate in the First Congress, would become part of the text of the First Amendment of the Bill of Rights. The second half of the Establishment Clause includes the Free Exercise Clause, which allows individual citizens freedom from governmental interference in both private and public religious affairs.

Pennsylvania Constitution of 1776

1776 ConstitutionPennsylvania ConstitutionConstitution of 1776
The Pennsylvania Constitution of 1776 (ratified September 28, 1776) was the state's first constitution following the Declaration of Independence, and has been described as the most democratic in America, although it notably based rights in "men" not in "persons," as contemporaneous constitutions did in neighboring areas such as New Jersey, and as the 1689 English Bill of Rights and 1787 U.S. Constitution and 1791 U.S. Bill of Rights did. It was drafted by Robert Whitehill, Timothy Matlack, Dr. Thomas Young, George Bryan, James Cannon, and Benjamin Franklin.

Everson v. Board of Education

In its first hundred years, the United States Supreme Court interpreted the Constitution's Bill of Rights as a limit on federal government and considered the states bound only by those rights granted to its citizens by their own state constitutions. Because the federal laws during this period were remote influences at most on the personal affairs of its citizens, minimal attention was paid by the Court to how those provisions in the federal Bill of Rights were to be interpreted.

Article Seven of the United States Constitution

Article SevenMassachusetts' ratificationratification
After twelve amendments, including the ten in the Bill of Rights, were sent to the states in June 1789, North Carolina ratified the Constitution. Finally, Rhode Island, after having rejected the Constitution in a March 1788 referendum, called a ratifying convention in 1790. Faced with the threat of being treated as a foreign government, it ratified the Constitution by the narrowest margin (two votes). Timeline of drafting and ratification of the United States Constitution. The Federalist Papers. Anti-Federalist Papers. Gary Lawson & Guy Seidman, When Did the Constitution become Law, 77Notre Dame L. Rev.1 (2001). Steve Mount, The Federalists and Anti-Federalists, (2003).