Presentation on theme: "Chapter 2. Section 1 Where did our Government come from? The beginnings of American Government can be found when explorers, traders, and settlers first."— Presentation transcript:
Where did our Government come from? The beginnings of American Government can be found when explorers, traders, and settlers first made their way to North America in the mid-sixteenth century. The earliest English settlers brought with them knowledge of a tradition of ordered, limited, and representative government.
Basic Concepts of Government Ordered Government The English colonists saw the need for an orderly regulation of their relationships with one another – GOVERNMENT! Limited Government Colonists brought the idea that gov’t is restricted in what it may do. **Individuals have certain rights that government cannot take away.** Representative Government Gov’t should serve the will of the people. “Government of, by, and for the people”
Landmark English Documents The ideas of ordered, limited, and representative gov’t can be traced to several landmark (highly significant) documents. The Magna Carta Signed in 1215 by King John; “The Great Charter”; Limited King’s powers Guaranteed Trial by Jury and Due Process of Law (protection against the arbitrary taking of life, liberty, or property). The Petition of Right 1628 by Charles I; Limited the king’s power. King could not imprison or punish any person w/o due process; Stated the king could not impose martial law in times of peace, or require homeowners to shelter the king’s troops w/o consent. Stated that even a monarch must obey the law of the land. The English Bill of Rights 1689; Parliament offered the crown to William and Mary; Glorious Revolution; W&M had to agree to provisions. Prohibited standing army in peacetime All parliamentary elections to be free. Guaranteed right to a fair trial; freedom from excessive bail and cruel and unusual punishment.
The Thirteen Colonies “13 schools of government” Americans first began to learn the difficult art of government. Each colony was born out of a particular set of circumstances: Virginia = commercial venture; early colonist were employees of the Virginia Co of London Massachusetts = Settled by people in search of greater personal and religious freedom. Georgia = King George granted the land to 21 trustees who governed the colony. Each established on a charter Written grant of authority from the king. Granted land and some governing rights, the Crown retained some power. Three types of colonies: Royal, Proprietary, and Charter.
Royal Colonies Subject to direct control of the Crown. NH, MA, NY, NJ, VA, NC, SC, & GA Pattern of government set in place for the royal colonies. King named a governor to serve as colony’s chief executive. A council, also named by king, was an advisory board for the royal governor. Governor’s council later became both the upper house of the legislature and the colony’s high court. The lower house of a bicameral (two-house) legislature was elected by property owners. Governor appointed judges. Laws passed by legislature had to be approved by governor and the Crown.
Proprietary Colonies By 1775 there were three: MD, PA, DE Organized by a proprietor, a person to whom the king had made a grant of land. By charter, the land could be settled and governed as much as the proprietor chose. 1632 Maryland given to Lord Baltimore Intended as a haven for Catholics. 1681 Pennsylvania granted to William Penn Also acquired Delaware in 1682. Gov’t similar to Royal Colonies; Governor was appointed by Proprietor. In MD and DE the legislature was bicameral. PA had a unicameral legislature. Consisted of only one house.
Charter Colonies Massachusetts Bay Colony was first in 1629. Charter was revoked and became a Royal Colony in 1691. CT and RI were charter colonies founded by religious dissidents (rebels) from MA. Governors of CT and RI were elected each year by white, male property owners in the colony. King’s approval was required before governor could take office, but it was not often asked. Bicameral Legislature Laws were not subject to the governor’s veto, nor was the Crown’s approval needed. Judges were appointed by Legislature; appeals could be taken to the king. CT and RI were liberal for their time. Some believe that if Britain had allowed others colonies these freedoms that the Revolution may not have happened!