Level 403
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Confederation & the Constitution


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Society of the Cincinnati
modern US patriotic organization
Disestablished
To separate an official state church from tis connection with the government. Following the Revolution, all states disestablished the Anglican Church, though some New England states remained established Congregational Churches well into the 19th century.
Virginia Statue for Religious Freedom (1786)
Measure enacted by the Virginia legislature prohibiting state support for religious institutions and recognizing freedom of worship. Served as a model for the religion clause of the first amendment to the Constitution.
Civic Virtue
Willingness on the part of the citizens to sacrifice personal self-interest for the public good. Deemed a necessary component of a successful republic.
Articles of Confederation (1781-1789)
First American constitution that established the United States as a loose confederation of states under a weak national Congress, which was not granted the power to regulate commerce or collect taxes. The Articles were repl…
Old Northwest
Territories acquired by the federal government from the states, encompassing land northwest of the Ohio River, east of the Mississippi, and south of the Great Lakes. The well-organized management and sale of the lan…
Land Ordinance of 1785
western lands divided into 6mile squares called townships
Northwest Ordinance of 1787
Ordinance that was passed by Congress and set the rules of creating new states. This was for the large territory lying between the Great Lakes and the Ohio River. It granted limited self-government to…
Shay's Rebellion (1786)
Armed uprising of western Massachusetts debtors seeking lower taxes and to end property foreclosures. Though quickly put down, the insurrection inspired fears of "mob rule" among leading Revolutionaries.
Virginia Plan
Plan that addressed congressional representation in which James Madison proposed that large states such as Virginia and Pennsylvania should have proportionally more representatives in Congress than the smaller states such as New Jersey and Delaware
New Jersey Plan (1787)
Small state plan put forth at the Philadelphia convention, proposing equal representation by state, regardless of population, in a unicameral legislature. Small states feared the more populous states would dominate the agenda under a proportional system.
Great Compromise (1787)
Popular term for the measure which reconciled the New Jersey and Virginia plans at the constitutional convention, giving states proportional representation in the House and equal representation in the Senate. The compromise broke the stale…
Common Law
A system of law based on precedent and customs.
Civil law
a legal system based on a written code of laws
Three-fifths Compromise (1787)
Determined that each slave would be counted as three-fifths and involuntary servitude. Former Confederate States were required to ratify the amendment prior to gaining reentry into the Union.
Anti-Federalists
opponents of the Constitution who favored a stronger state government, small farmers and westerners
Federalists
those who supported the Constitution and a strong federal government, most numerous on Atlantic Coast
The Federalist Papers (1788)
Collection of essays written by John Jay, James Madison, and Alexander Hamilton and published during the ratification debate to New York to lay our Federalists' arguments in favor of the new Constitution. Since their publicat…
Lord Sheffield
He was an English politician who came from a Yorkshire family, a branch of which had settled in the Kingdom of Ireland.His grandfather was a merchant who emigrated to Ireland after the Restoration. He inher…
Daniel Shays
He was an American soldier, revolutionary, and farmer famous for being one of the leaders of Shays' Rebellion, a populist uprising against oppressive debt collection and tax policies in Massachusetts in 1786 and 1787.
Patrick Henry
A young member of the Virginia House of Burgesses Persuaded them to take action against the Stamp Act
1786 Virginia Statute for Religious Freedom
authored by Thomas Jefferson; set the stage for the separation of church and state; guard against the creation of the state religion/church
anti-slavery society
1st established in 1775 by Quakers in Philadephia
Republican Motherhood
the elevation of women through the belief that mothers would raise good citizens committed to the public good
Articles of Confederation
This document was the first form of government for the United States. It set up a confederation and the federal government had very little power. All the power was in the hands of the states.
Shays's Rebellion
uprising of angry, poor farmers led by Daniel Shay's in Massachusetts; rebels demanded debt relief due to losing mortgages and taxes; rebellion was crushed; elite class began to fear mob-rule, "mobocracy"
Constitutional Convention 1787
held in Philadelphia; given the mandate to only reform the Articles of Confederation
The Virginia Plan
also known as the "large state" plan; called for an end to Articles of Confederation to be replaced by a strong central government; states would be subservient to fed. government; representation according to population
The New Jersey Plan
single chamber with equal representation per state.
The Great Compromise
created a bicameral legislature; House of Representatives- representation based on population; Senate- 2 senators from each state
Three-Fifths Compromise
counted each slave as three-fifths of a person for the purposes of determining a state's level of taxation and representation
reserved powers clause
any powers not specifically given to the national government are to be retained by the states
Bill of Rights
Recognized by William and Mary which limited the powers of the monarchy, prohibited Catholics from occupying he throne and guaranteed the role of Parliament in government
Federalist Papers
Key element in the Federalist campaign for the Constitution. This was a series of highly persuasive essays written for a New York newspaper by James Madison, Alexander Hamilton, and John Jay. The 85 essays, l…
Publius
pseudonym used by Hamilton, Madison, and Jay for authorship of Federalist Papers; evoked the idea of unity, the old Roman Republic values; and speaking for the "public"
Strict Constructionist
belief that the Constitution clearly defines only certain federal powers with exact language; promoted by Madison
Loose Constructionist (elastic)
belief that the Constitution has elastic language which allows fro the expansion of government powers to suit future needs; promoted by Hamilton
Broad Powers
granted to Congress the power to taxation; control of money; regulation of commerce; the right to conclude treaties
Level 405