Presentation on theme: "Chapter 7 A More Perfect Union ( )"— Presentation transcript:
1 Chapter 7 A More Perfect Union (1777-1790) Section 1 The Articles of Confederation
2 Second Continental Congress Needed a plan of government that met the needs of all 13 statesThe states joined to fight against the British, but would they be able to work together and maintain their independence?The states’ first task was to establish their own political institutions.
3 State ConstitutionsMay 1776, Congress asked the states to organize their governments.Each state adopted a constitution (Plan of government)Each learned from British rule and did not want too much power for a single ruler.Pennsylvania even had an elected council with 12 members.Each had limited power for the governor.
4 Limiting PowerStates also divided government functions between the governor and the legislatureMost states established bicameral (two-house) legislatures to divide power even furtherThe writers of the constitutions wanted to keep the power in the hands of the people.
5 Limiting Power (cont.) Elections were frequent . In order to vote (in most states) you had to be a white male, 21 years old or older, and own property.Some states allowed free African Americans to vote.
6 Forming a Republic Americans agreed that they should be a republic Citizens rule through elected representatives.Disagreements arose on organization of the powers.Most Americans wanted a weak central government.
7 Forming a Republic (cont.) Each state would be like independent countries.States would act independently on most issues.The central government would only wage war and handle relations with other nations.
8 Planning a New Government 1776- Congress appointed a committee to draw a constitutionNovember The Articles of Confederation was adoptedWas America’s first constitutionCentral government in which the states kept most of their powerUnder the Articles Congress had the power to conduct foreign affairs, maintain armed forces, borrow money, and issue currencyJohn Hanson- 1st President of the United States under the Articles of Confederation
9 Weaknesses of the Articles Congress could not regulate tradeOr force citizens to join the armyOr impose taxesIf Congress needed money they had to ask the state legislatures- but they were NOT required to contributeCongress lacked a chief executive
10 The Confederation Government Did not provide a strong enough governmentTo pass a law 9 states had to agreeDespite weaknesses it made some important achievementsUnder the Confederation government, Americans won independence and expanded foreign tradeAlso helped with the governing if western territories
11 Moving West1790- About 120,000 lived west of the Appalachian MountainsSettlers hoped to organize lands as states and join the unionLand claims were given up and Congress took control of these lands1784- Congress divided the western territory into self-governing districtsWhen the number of people in a district reached the population of the smallest existing state, that district could petition for statehood
12 The Ordinance of 17851785- Congress passed an ordinance (law) that established a procedure for surveying and selling western lands north of the Ohio RiverDivided the massive territory into 6 miles by 6 miles townshipsTownships were divided into 36 sections (640 acres)Each would be sold at public auctionTo govern the territory, a new ordinance was needed
13 The Northwest Ordinance 1787- Created a single Northwest TerritoryNorth of the Ohio River and east of the Mississippi RiverDivided into 3 to 5 smaller territoriesWhen the population reached 60,000 the people could petition for statehoodEach new state would have the same rights as the original 13 states
14 More of the Northwest Ordinance Had a bill of rights for settlersGuaranteed freedom of religion and trial by jurySlavery was outlawedThis clause (condition added to a document) marked the first attempt to stop the spread of slavery in the USThe Ordinance of 1785 and the Northwest Ordinance opened the way for settlement of the Northwest Territory in a stable and orderly manner
15 Financial ProblemsBy The money printed during the Revolutionary War depreciated (fell in value) so far that it was almost worthless.Taxes could not be collected so Congress and the states printed their own paper money.Not backed in silver or gold, so it had no real value.War for independence left Congress with a huge debt.Congress owned money to American soldiers, citizens, and foreign nations.Did not have the money to send.
17 Robert Morris’s Import Tax 1781- The finances were collapsing.Congress created a department of finance led by Philadelphia merchant Robert Morris.Morris proposed a 5% tax on imported goods to help pay the debt.The plan called for a change to the Articles to give Congress the power to tax.Rhode Island refused so it did not pass.The financial crisis continued to worsen.
18 Problems With BritainThe British did not leave the forts they were supposed to according to the Treaty of Paris (1783)Americans complained that the British were keeping them out of the West Indies and other British markets1785- John Adams was sent to London to discuss the problemsThe British responded that the United States did not live up to their side of the Treaty.The states never paid the loyalists that lost their land and property
19 Problems With SpainSpain wanted to stop American expansion into its territorySpain closed the lower Mississippi River to American shipping in 1784Westerners no longer had this trade routeThe Confederation could not handle the issues properly.These problems worried many leaders and they saw that there was a need for a stronger government.
20 AssignmentOn a separate sheet of paper, choose one passage from this section and write a paragraph explaining something new you learned.Be sure to use the Elephant Paragraph format:Introduction sentenceSupporting information sentenceOutside information sentenceConcluding sentence