Page one of the officially engrossed copy of the Constitution signed by delegates. A print run of 500 copies of the final version preceded this copy.
Signing of the Constitution, September 17, 1787 (1940 by Howard Chandler Christy)
1977 13-cent U.S. Postage stamp commemorating the Articles of Confederation bicentennial; the draft was completed on November 15, 1777
Dates the 13 states ratified the Constitution
The Act of the Maryland legislature to ratify the Articles of Confederation, February 2, 1781
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Preamble to Art. V, Sec. 1
"We the People" in an original edition
Art. V, Sec. 2 to Art. VI
Closing endorsement section of the United States Constitution
Art. VII to Art. IX, Sec. 2
United States Bill of Rights
Currently housed in the National Archives.
Art. IX, Sec. 2 to Sec. 5
John Jay, 1789–1795
Art. IX, Sec. 5 to Art. XIII, Sec. 2
John Marshall, 1801–1835
Art. XIII, Sec. 2 to signatures
Salmon P. Chase {{refn|group= lower-alpha|The Chase Court, 1864–1873, in 1865 were Salmon P. Chase (chief Justice); Hon. Nathan Clifford, Maine; Stephen J. Field, Justice Supreme Court, U.S.; Hon. Samuel F. Miller, U.S. Supreme Court; Hon. Noah H. Swayne, Justice Supreme Court, U.S.; Judge Morrison R. Waite}}
William Howard Taft {{refn|group= lower-alpha|The Taft Court, 1921–1930, in 1925 were James Clark McReynolds, Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr., William Howard Taft (chief justice), Willis Van Devanter, Louis Brandeis. Edward Sanford, George Sutherland, Pierce Butler, Harlan Fiske Stone}}
Earl Warren {{refn|group= lower-alpha|The Warren Court, 1953–1969, in 1963 were Felix Frankfurter; Hugo Black; Earl Warren (chief justice); Stanley Reed; William O. Douglas. Tom Clark; Robert H. Jackson; Harold Burton; Sherman Minton}}
William Rehnquist {{refn|group= lower-alpha|The Rehnquist Court, 1986–2005.}}
José Rizal
Sun Yat-sen

It superseded the Articles of Confederation, the nation's first constitution.

- Constitution of the United States

On March 4, 1789, the government under the Articles was replaced with the federal government under the Constitution.

- Articles of Confederation
Page one of the officially engrossed copy of the Constitution signed by delegates. A print run of 500 copies of the final version preceded this copy.

22 related topics with Alpha

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Continental Congress

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Series of legislative bodies, with some executive function, for thirteen of Britain's colonies in North America, and the newly declared United States just before, during, and after the American Revolutionary War.

Series of legislative bodies, with some executive function, for thirteen of Britain's colonies in North America, and the newly declared United States just before, during, and after the American Revolutionary War.

The term "Continental Congress" most specifically refers to the First and Second Congresses of 1774–1781 and, at the time, was also used to refer to the Congress of the Confederation of 1781–1789, which operated as the first national government of the United States until being replaced under the Constitution of the United States.

In March 1781, the nation's first Frame of Government, the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, came into force, at which time the body became what later was called the Congress of the Confederation.

An artist's depiction of the rebellion: Shays' troops repulsed from the armory at Springfield, Massachusetts in early 1787

Shays' Rebellion

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Armed uprising in Western Massachusetts and Worcester in response to a debt crisis among the citizenry and in opposition to the state government's increased efforts to collect taxes both on individuals and their trades.

Armed uprising in Western Massachusetts and Worcester in response to a debt crisis among the citizenry and in opposition to the state government's increased efforts to collect taxes both on individuals and their trades.

An artist's depiction of the rebellion: Shays' troops repulsed from the armory at Springfield, Massachusetts in early 1787
Populist Governor John Hancock refused to crack down on tax delinquencies and accepted devalued paper currency for debts.
Artist's depiction of protesters watching a debtor in a scuffle with a tax collector by the courthouse at Springfield, Massachusetts. The insurrection was a tax-related rebellion.
Governor James Bowdoin instituted a heavy tax burden and stepped up a collection of back taxes.
Militia general William Shepard defended the Springfield Armory against rebel action.
General Benjamin Lincoln, portrait by Henry Sargent
This monument marks the spot of the final battle of Shays' Rebellion in Sheffield, Massachusetts.
The 1787 Constitutional Convention by Junius Brutus Stearns, 1856
Elbridge Gerry (1861 portrait by James Bogle) opposed the Constitution as drafted, although his reasons for doing so were not strongly influenced by the rebellion.

The widely held view was that the Articles of Confederation needed to be reformed as the country's governing document, and the events of the rebellion served as a catalyst for the Constitutional Convention and the creation of the new government.

There is still debate among scholars concerning the rebellion's influence on the Constitution and its ratification.

Annapolis Convention (1786)

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National political convention held September 11–14, 1786 at Mann's Tavern in Annapolis, Maryland, in which twelve delegates from five U.S. states gathered to discuss and develop a consensus on reversing the protectionist trade barriers that each state had erected.

National political convention held September 11–14, 1786 at Mann's Tavern in Annapolis, Maryland, in which twelve delegates from five U.S. states gathered to discuss and develop a consensus on reversing the protectionist trade barriers that each state had erected.

At the time, under the Articles of Confederation, each state was largely independent from the others, and the national government had no authority to regulate trade between and among the states.

The direct result of the Annapolis Convention's report and the ensuing events was the 1787 Philadelphia Convention, when the United States Constitution was drafted.

In 1868, this committee of representatives prosecuted President Andrew Johnson in his impeachment trial, but the Senate did not convict him.

United States Congress

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Legislature of the federal government of the United States.

Legislature of the federal government of the United States.

In 1868, this committee of representatives prosecuted President Andrew Johnson in his impeachment trial, but the Senate did not convict him.
The 1940 painting Scene at the Signing of the Constitution of the United States, depicting George Washington presiding over the signing of the United States Constitution.
United States Congress c. 1915
Historical graph of party control of the Senate, House, and Presidency. Since 1980, the Democrats have held the Presidency for four terms, but because of the Senate filibuster, have only been able to freely legislate in two years. The Republicans have been similarly disabled.
Congress's "power of the purse" authorizes taxing citizens, spending money, and printing currency.
Congress authorizes defense spending such as the purchase of the USS Bon Homme Richard (CV-31).
Congress oversees other government branches, for example, the Senate Watergate Committee, investigating President Nixon and Watergate, in 1973–74.
View of the United States Capitol from the United States Supreme Court building
The impeachment trial of President Clinton in 1999, Chief Justice William Rehnquist presiding
Second committee room in Congress Hall in Philadelphia
Library of Congress Jefferson Building
Lobbying depends on cultivating personal relationships over many years. Photo: Lobbyist Tony Podesta (left) with former senator Kay Hagan (center) and her husband.
An Act of Congress from 1960.
The House Financial Services committee meets. Committee members sit in the tiers of raised chairs, while those testifying, and audience members sit below.
In this example, the more even distribution is on the left and the gerrymandering is presented on the right.
The Federalist Papers argued in favor of a strong connection between citizens and their representatives.

The Congress was created by the Constitution of the United States and first met in 1789, replacing in its legislative function the Congress of the Confederation.

The Articles of Confederation in 1781 created the Congress of the Confederation, a unicameral body with equal representation among the states in which each state had a veto over most decisions.

1876 Currier & Ives printing of Washington being promoted to commanding general

Second Continental Congress

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Meeting of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies in America that united in the American Revolutionary War.

Meeting of delegates from the Thirteen Colonies in America that united in the American Revolutionary War.

1876 Currier & Ives printing of Washington being promoted to commanding general
John Trumbull's 1819 painting, Declaration of Independence, depicting the five-man drafting committee presenting the Declaration of Independence to Congress
South facade of Independence Hall (formerly the Pennsylvania Statehouse), Philadelphia, principal meeting site of the Second Continental Congress
1977 13-cent U.S. Postage stamp commemorating the Articles of Confederation bicentennial; the draft was completed in York (formerly York Town), Pennsylvania on November 15, 1777
A five-dollar banknote issued by the Second Continental Congress in 1775.

During this period, its achievements included: Successfully managing the war effort; drafting the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, the first U.S. constitution; securing diplomatic recognition and support from foreign nations; and resolving state land claims west of the Appalachian Mountains.

Jefferson's proposal for a Senate to represent the states and a House to represent the people was rejected, but a similar proposal was adopted later in the United States Constitution.

United States

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Transcontinental country primarily located in North America.

Transcontinental country primarily located in North America.

Cliff Palace in Colorado, built by the Native American Puebloans between AD 1190 and 1260
The original Thirteen Colonies (shown in red) in 1775
Declaration of Independence, a painting by John Trumbull, depicts the Committee of Five presenting the draft of the Declaration to the Continental Congress in Philadelphia, July 4, 1776.
Territorial acquisitions of the United States between 1783 and 1917
The Battle of Gettysburg, fought between Union and Confederate forces on July 1–3, 1863 around Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, was the deadliest of all Civil War battles. With more than 51,000 casualties, it marked a turning point in the Union's ultimate victory in the war.
U.S. Marines raising the American flag on Mount Suribachi during the Battle of Iwo Jima in one of the most iconic images of World War II
Martin Luther King Jr. delivers his famous "I Have a Dream" speech at the Lincoln Memorial during the March on Washington, August 1963.
U.S. president Ronald Reagan (left) and Soviet general secretary Mikhail Gorbachev at the Geneva Summit, February 1985
The World Trade Center in New York City burning from the September 11 terrorist attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda in 2001
Topographic map of the United States.
A map showing climate regions in the United States
The bald eagle has been the national bird of the United States since 1782.
Map of the United States showing the 50 states, the District of Columbia, and the five major U.S. territories
The headquarters of the United Nations, of which the U.S. is a founding member, has been situated in Midtown Manhattan since 1952.
U.S. Government spending and revenue from 1792 to 2018
The Pentagon, located in Arlington, Virginia across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C., is home to the U.S. Department of Defense.
Total incarceration in the United States by year (1920–2014)
A proportional representation of United States exports, 2019
Buzz Aldrin on the Moon, July 1969
Wealth inequality in the U.S. increased between 1989 and 2013.
The Interstate Highway System in the contiguous United States, which extends 46876 mi
Most prominent religion by state according to a 2014 Pew Research study
Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami, the primary teaching hospital of the University of Miami's Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine and the largest hospital in the United States with 1,547 beds
The University of Virginia, founded by Thomas Jefferson, is one of the many public colleges and universities in the United States. Some 80% of U.S. college students attend these types of institutions.
The Statue of Liberty, a gift from France, has become an iconic symbol of the American Dream.
Mark Twain, American author and humorist
Roast turkey, a traditional menu item of an American Thanksgiving dinner, November 2021
Grammy Museum at L.A. Live in Los Angeles, April 2009
The Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles, California, September 2015
The headquarters of the National Broadcasting Company (NBC) at Rockefeller Plaza in New York City
"the united states of America", April 6, 1776
Mayflower II, a replica of the original Mayflower, docked at Plymouth, Massachusetts
Slave states that seceded before April 15, 1861 Slave states that seceded after April 15, 1861 Union states that permitted slavery (border states) Union states that banned slavery
Territories
The Empire State Building was the tallest building in the world when completed in 1931, during the Great Depression.
Worker during construction of the Empire State Building in New York City in 1930; the Chrysler Building can be seen in the background
Rock formations in the Grand Canyon, northern Arizona
Mushroom cloud formed by the Trinity Experiment in July 1945, part of the Manhattan Project, the first detonation of a nuclear weapon in history
The bald eagle has been the national bird of the United States since 1782.
The World Trade Center in Lower Manhattan during the September 11 attacks by the Islamic terrorist group al-Qaeda in 2001
The amount of US debt, measured as a percentage of GDP from 1790 to 2018
Topographic map of the United States
The nuclear-powered aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73)
Köppen climate types of the U.S.
The New York City Police Department is the nation's largest municipal law enforcement agency.
The bald eagle has been the national bird of the United States since 1782.
The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street in New York City
The United States Capitol, where Congress meets: the Senate, left; the House, right
Percentage of respondents in the United States saying that religion is "very important" or "somewhat important" in their lives (2014)
The White House, residence and workplace of the U.S. President
The Texas Medical Center in downtown Houston is the largest medical complex in the world.
The Supreme Court Building, where the nation's highest court sits
The United Nations headquarters has been situated along the East River in Midtown Manhattan since 1952. The United States is a founding member of the UN.
The Pentagon, near Washington, D.C., is home to the U.S. Department of Defense.
U.S. dollar is the currency most used in international transactions and is the world's foremost reserve currency.
The New York Stock Exchange on Wall Street, the world's largest stock exchange by market capitalization of its listed companies
U.S. astronaut Buzz Aldrin saluting the flag on the Moon, 1969
The Statue of Liberty, a gift from France, has become an iconic symbol of the American Dream.
The Capitol Records Building, the home of the Capitol Studios, among the cultural landmarks of Los Angeles.
The Walt Disney Company is one of the biggest American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate

The second draft of the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, prepared by John Dickinson and completed no later than June 17, 1776, declared "The name of this Confederation shall be the 'United States of America'."

Nationalists led the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 in writing the United States Constitution, ratified in state conventions in 1788.

Northwest Territory (1787)

Northwest Ordinance

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Organic act of the Congress of the Confederation of the United States.

Organic act of the Congress of the Confederation of the United States.

Northwest Territory (1787)
Map of the states and territories of the United States as it was on August 7, 1789, when the Northwest Territory was organized

Considered one of the most important legislative acts of the Confederation Congress, it established the precedent by which the federal government would be sovereign and expand westward with the admission of new states, rather than with the expansion of existing states and their established sovereignty under the Articles of Confederation.

The natural rights provisions of the ordinance foreshadowed the Bill of Rights, the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution.

Gouverneur Morris

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Coat of Arms of Gouverneur Morris
Wooden leg of Gouverneur Morris. New-York Historical Society.
Gouverneur Morris and Robert Morris. Charles Willson Peale, 1783.
Morris wrote the Preamble to the United States Constitution.
Gouverneur Morris signs the Constitution. Painting by John Henry Hintermeister, 1925.
Gouverneur Morris portrait bust by Jean-Antoine Houdon, 1789, Paris.
Morris's home in 1897

Gouverneur Morris (January 31, 1752 – November 6, 1816) was an American statesman, a Founding Father of the United States, and a signatory to the Articles of Confederation and the United States Constitution.

The order in which the original 13 states ratified the constitution, then the order in which the others were admitted to the union.

Admission to the Union

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The order in which the original 13 states ratified the constitution, then the order in which the others were admitted to the union.
States that were never part of an organized U.S. territory.

Admission to the Union is provided by the Admissions Clause of the United States Constitution in Article IV, Section 3, Clause 1, which authorizes the United States Congress to admit new states into the Union beyond the thirteen states that already existed when the Constitution came into effect.

Between 1781 and 1789, the United States was governed by a unicameral Congress, the Congress of the Confederation, which operated under authority granted to it by the Articles of Confederation, the nation's first constitution.

Constitution of the Year XII (First French Republic)

Constitution

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Aggregate of fundamental principles or established precedents that constitute the legal basis of a polity, organisation or other type of entity and commonly determine how that entity is to be governed.

Aggregate of fundamental principles or established precedents that constitute the legal basis of a polity, organisation or other type of entity and commonly determine how that entity is to be governed.

Constitution of the Year XII (First French Republic)
Constitution of the Kingdom of Naples in 1848.
Detail from Hammurabi's stele shows him receiving the laws of Babylon from the seated sun deity.
Diagram illustrating the classification of constitutions by Aristotle.
Third volume of the compilation of Catalan Constitutions of 1585
The Cossack Constitution of Pylyp Orlyk, 1710.
A painting depicting George Washington at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 signing of the U.S. Constitution
Constitution of May 3, 1791 (painting by Jan Matejko, 1891). Polish King Stanisław August (left, in regal ermine-trimmed cloak), enters St. John's Cathedral, where Sejm deputies will swear to uphold the new Constitution; in background, Warsaw's Royal Castle, where the Constitution has just been adopted.
Presidential copy of the Russian Constitution.
Magna Carta
United States Constitution

The Constitution of San Marino might be the world's oldest active written constitution, since some of its core documents have been in operation since 1600, while the Constitution of the United States is the oldest active codified constitution.

All of the British colonies in North America that were to become the 13 original United States, adopted their own constitutions in 1776 and 1777, during the American Revolution (and before the later Articles of Confederation and United States Constitution), with the exceptions of Massachusetts, Connecticut and Rhode Island.