Constitution Sunday: “Americanus” V

“Americanus” V [John Stevens, Jr.] Daily Advertiser (New York, December 12, 1787 The structure of the American government, with its division into three branches and its layered arrangement from top (federal) to middle (state) to bottom (local), made it an exception in 1787 from what had been previously known. Even with the Constitution’s framework appearingContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: “Americanus” V”

Constitution Sunday: “Publius,” The Federalist XVI

“Publius,” The Federalist XVI [Alexander Hamilton] New-York Packet, December 4, 1787 When any union or confederacy of states or provinces decide to form a nation, it does so with its citizens knowing that members may “alarm the apprehensions, inflame the passions, and conciliate the good will even” in those states that were not “chargeable withContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: “Publius,” The Federalist XVI”

Constitution Sunday: “Publius,” The Federalist XIV

“Publius,” The Federalist XIV [James Madison] New-York Packet, November 30, 1787 With the draft Constitution having been published for consideration by the residents of each state in 1787 came questions about whether and how the federal government would effectuate its responsibilities given the vast land that the states and territories had already comprised—which James MadisonContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: “Publius,” The Federalist XIV”

Constitution Sunday: “Brutus” IV

“Brutus” IV New York Journal, November 29, 1787 At the heart of a healthy democracy is the power for people or their representatives to create, modify, or repeal the laws for those laws inevitably govern nearly all aspects of life. The New York Journal published an article that dissected fair representation in the proposed Constitution: “TheContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: “Brutus” IV”

Constitution Sunday: “The Republican” to the People

“The Republican” to the People Connecticut Courant (Hartford), January 7, 1788 The liberties that Americans hold dear are not inherently self-sustaining. While the Constitution secures many liberties, it requires Americans to be vigilant in fulfilling their civic duties. This week’s Constitution Sunday highlights the Connecticut Courant, which explored these issues amidst the debate about ratifying the Constitution:

Constitution Sunday: “Cato” V

“Cato” V New York Journal, November 22, 1787 Following are excerpts from an anonymous article published in the New York Journal: “To the Citizens of the State of New-York. In my last number I endeavored to prove that the language of the article relative to the establishment of the executive of this new government was vague and inexplicit, thatContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: “Cato” V”

The North’s Attempt at Salvation

The Deep South’s animating of a Second American Revolution, by seceding from the Union and laying the foundation for an operational Confederate government, forced the North to either suppress the South’s uprising or craft a resolution. The likelihood of war would deter any widespread northern suppression, leaving the question: What compromise could the North propose that appeasedContinue reading “The North’s Attempt at Salvation”

Constitution Sunday: Answers to Mason’s “Objections”: “Marcus” [James Iredell] IV

Answers to Mason’s “Objections”: “Marcus” [James Iredell] IV Norfolk and Portsmouth Journal (Virginia), March 12, 1788 Following are excerpts from James Iredell’s responses to George Mason’s “Objections” to the Constitution: “VIIIth. Objection. ‘Under their own construction of the general clause at the end of the enumerated powers, the Congress may grant monopolies in trade andContinue reading “Constitution Sunday: Answers to Mason’s “Objections”: “Marcus” [James Iredell] IV”

The Precursor to the Winter of Secession

Abraham Lincoln’s victory in the Election of 1860 was disconcerting news for the South. It was the most recent event in a string of events that seemingly endangered the southern way of life and the future of the country. At a time when many northerners suspected southern threats of secession were but a bluff, there was evidence thatContinue reading “The Precursor to the Winter of Secession”

Constitution Sunday: Answers to Mason’s “Objections”: “Marcus” [James Iredell] II

Answers to Mason’s “Objections”: “Marcus” [James Iredell] II Norfolk and Portsmouth Journal (Virginia), February 27, 1788 Following are excerpts from James Iredell’s responses to George Mason’s “Objections” to the Constitution: “IVth. Objection. The Judiciary of the United States is so constructed and extended, as to absorb and destroy the Judiciaries of the several States