2 The making of a republic After winning the Revolutionary War- the 13 Colonies are now States with their own State constitutions. In addition to forming state governments, the American people had to form a national government. The people agreed the new country should be a republic ( a government in which citizens ruled through elected representatives). They could not agree on what powers the new government should have.Republicanism shaped the United States after the Revolutionary War because Americans wanted a government in which the authority came from the people.
3 The articles of confederation A.O.C.RapArticles of Confederation:- Established a weak central government with the states keeping most of their power.- Congress had the power to conduct foreign affairs, borrow money, and issue currency.Congress could not regulate trade, impose taxes, force citizens to join the army.If Congress needed money they had to ask the states (they were not required to contribute).There was no chief executive to carry out laws.Congress could not enforce laws to states.All 13 states had to agree to any amendments (makes in nearly impossible to correct all problems).Each state had one vote regardless of the population (states with larger populations though they should have more votes).The articles of confederationNovember The Second Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation as the nations first constitution.
4 Economic ProblemsIn the 1780’s the Continental Congress faced a large debt due to the Revolutionary War expenses. Congress had borrowed money from American citizens and foreign governments. The government still owed the soldiers their pay for their military service. Since they did not have the power to tax to pay for the debt, raising money was difficult.After Britain lost the war, it could no longer impose mercantilist controls on the economy, so Americans were free to make their own economic choices.
5 When George Washington heard of this event he said, “mankind, when left to themselves, are unfit for their own government.”Shay’s rebellionEconomic troubles fit the farmers hard- unable to sell their goods, they could not pay their taxes and debts. This led to officials to seize farmer’s lands and throw them in jail. Many farmers wanted the government to help- resentment boiled in Massachusetts. Daniel Shay led the farmers to the courts in their goal to stop judges from legally taking away farmers’ lands.The revolt grew to 1,200 supporters by Shay and his supporters went to seize guns and ammunition from the federal arsenal (weapons storehouse). The militia fired a warning shot- however the farmers did not stop. The militia fired again, killing four farmers.Shay and his followers fled and the uprising was over. Shay’s rebellion frightened Americans- concern grew that the government could not handle unrest and prevent violence.
6 Constitutional convention George Washington was chosen to lead the meetings.Constitutional conventionSeptember 1786, Hamilton called for a convention to discuss trade issues and to make changes to meet the needs of the Union. George Washington was at first reluctant- but upon hearing the news of Shay’s Rebellion he changed his mind. Having Washington at the convention guaranteed public trust which was important because the convention did not just amend the Articles of Confederation- they came up with an entirely new Constitution.Members of the Constitutional Convention came from a wide range of occupations, from Judges to farmers. Nearly ½ were not college educated. Each of these groups were not present and not considered part of the political process: Women, Native Americans, and African Americans.The weaknesses of the central government lead to the Constitutional Convention due to the lack of power in the central government made it difficult to address the nation’s issues.
7 The experiences under British rule explains why Americans feared a strong national government. As a result to the war- instead of a king, the people would rule.The plansVirginia PlanEdmund Randolph (with James Madison) proposed this plan at the Convention- it called for a strong National Government. It consisted of a government with three branches: two-house legislature, chief executive chosen by legislature, and a court system. Both houses would have representatives proportional to the states population.Delegates from small states objected- they wanted a system in which all states had equal representation.New Jersey PlanWilliam Paterson’s plan called for a single house with each state having one vote. It gave Congress the power to set taxes, regulate trade, and elect an executive branch made up of more than one person. It favored a more powerful government than the Articles of Confederation- but less powerful than what the Virginia Plan proposed.Smaller States wanted to base the national government on the New Jersey Plan
8 The Three-Fifth’s Compromise The compromisesOn June 19th, the delegates decided to create a new constitution based on the Virginia Plan.The Great CompromiseRoger Sherman’s compromise proposed different representation in the two-house legislature. In the upper house- Senate- each state would have two members (equal representation). In the lower house- House of Representatives- the number of seats are based on population.The Three-Fifth’s CompromiseNorthern and Southern states could not agree on whether slaves should count as a part of the population (would effect House of Rep.). Northern states had less slaves therefore less representation. Adversely the Southern states with more population accounted for would have higher taxes. It was decided that the Three-Fifth’s Compromise was how slaves would be counted for taxes and representation (Three- fifths of the slave population would count towards a state population).
9 Assignment- Strengths and weaknesses Create a T-chart of the strengths & weaknesses of the Articles of Confederation. Use page 184 in your textbook.Strengths__________________________Weaknesses