Divided the Northwest Territory into
5000 adult males=could elect a legislature.
Population of 60,000, could apply to be a
•Promotes equality—not colonies
Country could expand and settle territories
won from British.
Paper money printed was worthless.
Farmers lost their farms and livestock over
War debt from Rev. War.
Daniel Shay led a rebellion against
courthouses, destroyed records went to
national arsenal at Springfield, Mass.
Congress unable to stop them.
Americans thought the country was falling apart.
Call for convention in 1787
• Why?: To fix the Articles of Confederation
• Where?: Philadelphia—Independence Hall
• When?: Summer 1787 (May-Sept.)
55 delegates from 12 states. Avg. Age 42
James Madison—Father of the Constitution
• Arrives early with plan, note taker
• Bright, quiet, studied governments
George Washington—President of the Convention
• Civic duty
Ben Franklin—Oldest (81)
• Teaches compromise
Alexander Hamilton—Loves Federal Govt.
• Strong central government
• “I smell a rat.”
Sam Adams & John Hancock
• Fear strong central government
2. No vote is final.
3. Notes secret for 30 years.
Strong Central Government
3 Branches of Govt.
• Executive Branch: Leader
• Judicial Branch: Courts (National/Federal)
• Legislative Branch: Lawmakers
Two House (Bicameral) Legislature
• Upper House—Senate
• Lower House—House of Representatives
More people = more representation
3 Branches: Legislative, Executive &
Legislative Branch 1 House, not 2
Equal Representation—all states equal
Every slave counts as 3/5 a person for
both representation and taxes.
• Congress will leave slave trade alone until 1808.
9 of 13 states needed (2/3)
• Dislike strong federal government, oppose the
• Want individual rights protected (life, liberty,
pursuit of happiness).
• Like Constitution/support a strong central
• Federalists Papers: Series of essays explaining
how good the Constitution is, (John Jay,
Alexander Hamilton, James Madison)
• Agree to add a Bill of Rights after ratification.