These delegates signed the Constitution:
Gunning Bedford jun
Dan of St Thos. Jenifer
James Madison Jr.
Richd. Dobbs Spaight
Charles Cotesworth Pinckney
Wm. Saml. Johnson
|Brief biographies of each of the Founding
Fathers who were delegates to the
Drafted by Thomas Jefferson between June 11
and June 28, 1776, the Declaration of
Independence is at once the nation's most
cherished symbol of liberty and Jefferson's
most enduring monument. Here, in exalted and
unforgettable phrases, Jefferson expressed the
convictions in the minds and hearts of the
American people. The political philosophy of the
Declaration was not new; its ideals of individual
liberty had already been expressed by John
Locke and the Continental philosophers. What
Jefferson did was to summarize this philosophy
in "self-evident truths" and set forth a list of
grievances against the King in order to justify
before the world the breaking of ties between
the colonies and the mother country.
|Constitutional Amendments 1-10 make up what
is known as
The Bill of Rights.
During the debates on the adoption of the
Constitution, its opponents repeatedly charged
that the Constitution as drafted would open the
way to tyranny by the central government.
Fresh in their minds was the memory of the
British violation of civil rights before and during
the Revolution. They demanded a "bill of rights"
that would spell out the immunities of individual
citizens. Several state conventions in their
formal ratification of the Constitution asked for
such amendments; others ratified the
Constitution with the understanding that the
amendments would be offered.
On September 25, 1789, the First Congress of
the United States therefore proposed to the
state legislatures 12 amendments to the
Constitution that met arguments most
frequently advanced against it. The first two
proposed amendments, which concerned the
number of constituents for each Representative
and the compensation of Congressmen, were
not ratified. Articles 3 to 12, however, ratified
by three-fourths of the state legislatures,
constitute the first 10 amendments of the
Constitution, known as the Bill of Rights.
The original states, except Rhode Island,
collectively appointed 70 individuals to the
Constitutional Convention, but a number did
not accept or could not attend. Those who did
not attend included Richard Henry Lee, Patrick
Henry, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, Samuel
Adams and, John Hancock.
In all, 55 delegates attended the Constitutional
Convention sessions, but only 39 actually
signed the Constitution. The delegates ranged
in age from Jonathan Dayton, aged 26, to
Benjamin Franklin, aged 81, who was so infirm
that he had to be carried to sessions in a sedan
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|Copyright © 2018 Barry M. Baker