A report on United States Bill of Rights

On June 5, 1788, Patrick Henry spoke before Virginia's ratification convention in opposition to the Constitution.
George Washington's 1788 letter to the Marquis de Lafayette observed, "the Convention of Massachusetts adopted the Constitution in toto; but recommended a number of specific alterations and quieting explanations." Source: Library of Congress
James Madison, primary author and chief advocate for the Bill of Rights in the First Congress

The United States Bill of Rights comprises the first ten amendments to the United States Constitution.

- United States Bill of Rights

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Gitlow v. New York

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Landmark decision of the United States Supreme Court holding that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution had extended the First Amendment's provisions protecting freedom of speech and freedom of the press to apply to the governments of U.S. states.

Landmark decision of the United States Supreme Court holding that the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution had extended the First Amendment's provisions protecting freedom of speech and freedom of the press to apply to the governments of U.S. states.

The Supreme Court previously held, in Barron v. Baltimore, that the Constitution's Bill of Rights applied only to the federal government, that states were free to enforce statutes that restricted the rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights, and that the federal courts could not interfere with the enforcement of such statutes.

Fisher Ames

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Representative in the United States Congress from the 1st Congressional District of Massachusetts.

Representative in the United States Congress from the 1st Congressional District of Massachusetts.

The Ames Tavern
Plaque on the Norfolk County Registry of Deeds

His acceptance of the Bill of Rights garnered support in Massachusetts for the new Constitution.

Dates the 13 states ratified the Constitution

Article Seven of the United States Constitution

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Article Seven of the United States Constitution sets the number of state ratifications necessary for the Constitution to take effect and prescribes the method through which the states may ratify it.

Article Seven of the United States Constitution sets the number of state ratifications necessary for the Constitution to take effect and prescribes the method through which the states may ratify it.

Dates the 13 states ratified the Constitution

After twelve amendments, including the ten in the Bill of Rights, were sent to the states in June 1789, North Carolina ratified the Constitution.

Irving Brant

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American biographer, journalist, and historian.

American biographer, journalist, and historian.

While he had first focused on the then acknowledged contributions of Madison as architect of the Constitution and author of the Bill of Rights, he came to believe that Madison was equal in importance to Thomas Jefferson in creating the United States.