Massachusetts

The Legitimization of Unions

The labor movement gained significant momentum during the 1830s and 1840s, paving the way for future generations of Americans to secure extensive workers’ rights.

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The Prioritization of Education

Education was not always such a prominent issue in every state and every American community in the way that modern Americans experience. Horace Mann, who was secretary of the Massachusetts State Board of Education in 1837, ensured that all schools would have in common: “tuition-free, tax-supported, meeting statewide standards of curriculum, textbooks, and facilities, staffed […]

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Constitution Sunday: “A Political Dialogue”

“A Political Dialogue” Massachusetts Centinel (Boston), October 24, 1787 Following are excerpts from an article published in the Massachusetts Centinel, which purported to capture a conversation between “Mr. Grumble” and “Mr. Union”: “Mr. Union. Well, but neighbour, what are your objections to the new Constitution?” “Mr. Grumble. Why, as to the matter, I can’t say […]

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The Election of 1824

Not long after the election of 1820, an essentially uncontested election seeing the re-election of President James Monroe, the campaigning for the election of 1824 began. President Monroe had indicated that he would not seek an unprecedented third term as president, but that did not stop others from posturing for the election. As a journalist […]

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A Supreme Sovereign Power

Despite the fact that the Articles of Confederation loosely held the states together, there was still a remarkable union achieved. There were privileges and immunities granted, “reciprocity of extradition and judicial proceedings among the states,” no “travel and discriminatory trade restrictions between states, and the substantial grant of powers to the Congress in Article 9 […]

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Coalescing All the States

Americans had a keen understanding of the idea, popularized by Montesquieu, that “only a small homogeneous society whose interests were essentially similar could properly sustain a republican government.” Gordon Wood, The Creation of the American Republic: 1776-1787, 356. This idea created a fundamental problem for America: it was not a small homogeneous society, and it was rapidly […]

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