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A More Perfect Union

Ch 7

Margie de Quesada

on 23 October 2014

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Transcript of A More Perfect Union

Ch 7 - A More Perfect Union
Section 1
State Constitutions
- By the time the Revolution ended, states had written their own plans for government (constitution)
Limits on Power
- Each state divided the power of control between the governor and a state legislature
- Each state also had a bicameral (two house) legislature
- States agreed that they wanted a republic
- They wanted each state to run like a small independent country
- A limited national government would also be used
- No Executive
Problems with the Articles of Confederation
The Articles of Confederation

Called a "firm league of friendship"
Could NOT
Keep an army/navy and declare war
Force citizens to join the army
Make treaties with other countries
National Government
Borrow and print money
Control trade with other countries or states
Impose taxes
- Each state had one vote regardless of population
- The document had to be approved by all states
In order for a new law to be passed or changed 9 states had to say yes
Policies for Western Lands
The Ordinance of 1785
- This law came up with a way to divide up the lands north of the Ohio River
- Divided areas into townships 6 miles long and 6 miles wide with 36 different sections
- Each section would be sold at a public auction cheaply
The Northwest Ordinance
- Passed in 1787, it created a Northwest Territory including: Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Michigan and Wisconsin
- When the population of a territory would reach 60,000. they could petition for statehood
Financial Problems
Problems with Britain
Problems with Spain
Problems at Home and Abroad
- Both the states and the Continental Congress printed money, so their value depreciated
- Congress realized the country was in debt after the war
- British did not leave the Great Lakes area and did not allow some U.S. merchants to trade in the West Indies
- U.S. sends John Adams to London to talk, but the British don't want to
- British were mad that colonists hadn't paid their debts as promised by the Treaty of 1783
- Americans started moving west near the Mississippi River (which belonged to Spain)
- Negotiations did not work, so Spain blocked the lower part of the Mississippi River
Section 2
Depression Hits
- After the war, Southern farmers were in debt because of:
- ruined plantations
- trade problems
Shay's Rebellion
- State officials took farmers' lands who couldn't pay their debts and put many in jail
- Angry farmers in Massachusetts joined up and were led by Daniel Shays
Word spreads about this rebellion and more people realize a stronger national government is needed
The Issue of Slavery
- Slavery was legal in all 13 states
- The Quakers created the first anti-slavery society
- Virginia passed a law encouraging manumission (freeing slaves)
The Constitutional Convention
- 55 delegates from all 13 states met in Philadelphia in 1787
- George Washington led the discussions
The Virginia Plan
- Written by James Madison (proposed by Edmund Randolph)
- Proposed:
- Two house legislature (proportional to state's population)
- A president would be chosen by legislature
- Supreme court system
- House of Representatives would be elected by the people
- Representatives elect members for the Senate
The New Jersey Plan
- written by William Paterson
- Proposed:
- One house legislature
- Each state would elect the same number of representatives
- Proposed by Roger Sherman of Connecticut
The Great Compromise
- Legislative branch would have two parts (House and Senate)
- House of Representatives would be based on population of the states
- Two Senators would be chosen from each state regardless of population
- President would be elected by the people
Three-Fifths Compromise
- Northern states and Southern states disagree about how to "count" slaves
- Each slave was counted as 3/5 of a person when a state’s population was calculated
Approving the Constitution
- On September 17, 1787, the delegates signed the Constitution
- To be approved, 9 states had to say yes
Section 3
European Influences
- Magna Carta (1215) - limited the power of a king
- English Bill of Rights (1689) - guaranteed people certain rights by law
- John Locke - believed people had natural rights (life, liberty and property)
- Baron Montesquieu - believed government powers should be divided into branches
The division of power between state and national levels
Supreme Law
- The Constitution would be the "supreme law of the land"
- Believed in a strong national government
- They supported the Constitution
- Wanted the states to keep more power
- Did not support the Constitution unless they added a Bill of Rights
Delaware becomes the first state to approve
Establish a court system
Establish post office
Capitals in the United States
Who Could Vote?
It was Written in 1776, but approved in 1781
- It also included a clause that stated slavery would be illegal
Land Act of 1800
- Law passed that made it easier to buy land and settle out West
- Requirements: A person must buy 320 acres of land for $2 an acre (after a half deposit, they could pay in installments)
Three Branches of Government
"checks and balances"
pg. 177
- America's first constitution
- Massachusetts militia finally stopped them, yet killed 4 farmers
Full transcript