We the People: The Citizen & the Constitution, Level 3
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Howard Chandler Christy, Signing of the Constitution, Architect of the Capitol, House wing, east stairway
Lesson 14 Primary Sources

The Federalist Papers

A collection of eighty-five essays advocating the ratification of the constitution proposed at the Philadelphia Convention, properly called The Federalist, written between October, 1787 and May, 1788 by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay.

Alexander Hamilton, The Examination #12

Hamilton's thoughts on Article 3, Section 1 of the Constitution: "The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish."

Benjamin Franklin's Speech to the Constitutional Convention

Franklin's speech, delivered by James Wilson, in favor of the new Constitution, despite its possible faults.

Bill of Rights (1791): The original 12 proposed amendments

James Madison originally submitted 17 amendments to become the Bill of RIghts. All were passed by the House of Representatives, but only 12 were passed by the Senate and the states ratified 10 of them.

Centinel No. 11

Anti-Federalist paper published in the Philadelphia Independent Gazetteer and Philadelphia Freeman's Journal, arguing that people a fear or anarchy is not enough reason to justify ratifying the Constitution.

Federalist No. 1

From WIkipedia: Federalist No. 1 is an essay by Alexander Hamilton and the first of the Federalist Papers, a preface in broad terms of the forthcoming arguments in favor of the proposed constitution.

Federalist No. 10

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 10 is an essay by James Madison arguing for the ratification of the United States Constitution. It addresses the question of how to guard against "factions" with interests contrary to the rights of others or the interests of the whole community.

Federalist No. 14

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 14 is an essay titled, "Objections to the Proposed Constitution From Extent of Territory Answered" by James Madison addressing a major objection of the Anti-Federalists to the proposed Constitution: that the sheer size of the United States would make it impossible to govern justly as a single country.

Federalist No. 34

From Wikipedia: Hamilton's aim is to demonstrate that a government must have unlimited power of taxation for such circumstances as war and natural disaster.

Federalist No. 37

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 37 is an essay by James Madison, published on January 11, 1788 discussing some of the political questions raised at the Constitutional Convention, such as the question of the authority of the state versus the liberty of the people.

Federalist No. 39

From Wikipedia: In No. 39, James Madison argues that the operation of the government will be republican but the principles of that operation will be democratic.

Federalist No. 42

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 42 is an essay by James Madison, contending that the grant of specific powers to the federal government actually operates to limit the power of the federal government to act with respect to the states.

Federalist No. 43

Federalist No. 43, written by James Madison and titled, ""The Same Subject Continued: The Powers Conferred by the Constitution Further Considered," continues Federalist No. 42 on ratification.

Federalist No. 45

Federalist No. 45 was written by James Madison and published January 26, 1788 and addresses the concern of balancing the power between federal and state governments.

Federalist No. 47

Federalist No. 47 was written by James Madison and addresses concerns that the proposed constitution did not provide enough separation of powers.

Federalist No. 48

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 48 is an essay by James Madison, building on Federalist No. 47 in which Madison argued for separation of powers; in this one he argues that the legislative, executive, and judicial branches of government must not be totally divided.

Federalist No. 51

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 51 is an essay by James Madison, published on February 6, 1788. No. 51 addresses means by which appropriate checks and balances can be created in government.

Federalist No. 68

Federalist No. 68 was written by Alexander Hamilton and discusses the process of electing the president and vice president.

Federalist No. 70

Federalist No. 70 was written by Alexander Hamilton and examines the question of a plural executive, arguing that having multiple presidents introduces conflict and difference of opinion.

Federalist No. 78

From Wikipedia: The essay was published May 28, 1788 and was written to explicate and justify the structure of the judiciary under the proposed Constitution; it is the first of six essays by Hamilton on this issue. In particular, it addresses concerns by the Anti-Federalists over the scope and power of the federal judiciary, which would have comprised unelected, politically insulated judges that would be appointed for life.

Federalist No. 8

From Wikipedia: In this paper, Hamilton argues for the utility of the Union to the well-being of Americans, specifically addressing the negative consequences if the Union were to collapse and conflict arise between the states. It is titled, "Consequences of Hostilities Between the States."

Federalist No. 84

From Wikipedia: Federalist No. 84, titled, "Certain General and Miscellaneous Objections to the Constitution Considered and Answered," was written by Alexander Hamilton and asserted that the Bill of RIghts was not a necessary component of the proposed constitution.

Fisher Ames, Speech at the Massachusetts Ratifying Convention

At the Massachusetts state convention of 1788, Ames's persuasive oratory was influential in obtaining ratification of the federal Constitution.

Luther Martin: Address No. 4

Martin's letter to the citizens of Maryland warning of entrusting too much power to the government.

Luther Martin: Genuine Information No. 12 (1788)

Martin's extensive criticism of the Philadelphia Convention, its methods and its work.

United States Bill of Rights

From Wikipedia: In the United States, the Bill of Rights is the name by which the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution are known. They were introduced by James Madison to the First United States Congress in 1789 as a series of articles, and came into effect on December 15, 1791, when they had been ratified by three quarters of the states.

United States Constitution

The supreme law of the United States that provides the framework for the government. The Constitution outlines the nation's institutions of government and the most important rights of the people. The document was created in 1787 during the Philadelphia Convention. The government created by the Constitution took effect on March 4, 1789.

Lesson 14      What Was the Federalist Position in the Debate about Ratification?
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