Unformatted text preview:

lOMoARcPSD 31101189 Chapter 6 Notes Chapter 6 Notes United States History Ii Northern Virginia Community College United States History Ii Northern Virginia Community College Studocu is not sponsored or endorsed by any college or university Studocu is not sponsored or endorsed by any college or university Downloaded by Arya Shah apancake99 gmail com lOMoARcPSD 31101189 Chapter 6 A New Nation Introduction Shays Rebellion o On July 4 1788 Philadelphians turned out for a grand federal procession in honor of the new national constitution o The grand procession represented what many Americans hoped the United States would become a diverse but cohesive prosperous nation o In April 1789 thousands gathered in New York to see George Washington take the presidential oath of office o November Washington called his fellow citizens to celebrate with a day of thanksgiving particularly for the peaceable and rational manner in which the government had been established o But the new nation was never as cohesive as its champions had hoped o Although the officials of the new federal government and the people who supported it placed great emphasis on unity and cooperation the country was anything but unified o The Constitution itself had been a controversial document adopted to strengthen the government so that it could withstand internal conflicts o in 1786 1878 a few years after the Revolution ended thousands of farmers in western Massachusetts were struggling under a heavy burden of debt o Their problems were made worse by weak local and national economies o Many political leaders saw both the debt and the struggling economy as a consequence of the Articles of Confederation which provided the federal government with no way to raise revenue and did little to create a cohesive nation out of the various states o The farmers wanted the Massachusetts government to protect them from their creditors but the state supported the lenders instead Many of these farmers took up arms o Led by a fellow veteran named Daniel Shays these armed men the Shayists resorted to tactics like the Patriots had used before the Revolution forming blockades around courthouses to keep judges from issuing foreclosure orders o These protesters saw their cause and their methods as an extension of the Spirit of 1776 they were protecting their rights and demanding redress for the people s grievances o Governor James Bowdoin however saw the Shaysites as rebels who wanted to rule the government through mob violence o He called up thousands of militiamen to disperse them o A former Revolutionary general Benjamin Lincoln led the state force insisting that Massachusetts must prevent a state of anarchy confusion and slavery o In January 1787 Lincoln s militia arrested more than 1000 Shaysites and reopened the courts Downloaded by Arya Shah apancake99 gmail com lOMoARcPSD 31101189 o Shays and other leaders were indicted for treason and several were sentenced to death but eventually Shays and most of his followers received pardons The Constitutional Convention o The uprising in Massachusetts convinced leaders around the country to act o After years of goading by James Madison and other nationalists delegates from 12 13 states met at the Pennsylvania State House in Philadelphia in the summer of 1787 o Only Rhode Island declined to send a representative o The delegates arrived at the convention with instructions to revise the Articles of o The biggest problem the convention needed to solve was the federal s government o That weakness meant that the burden of paying back debt from the Revolutionary o The states in turn found themselves beholden to the lenders who had bought up Confederation inability to levy taxes War fell on the states their war bonds o That was part of why Massachusetts had chosen to side with its wealthy bondholders over poor western farmers o James Madison however had no intention of simply revising the Articles of Confederation o He intended to produce a completely new national constitution o In the preceding year he had completed 2 extensive research projects one on the history of government in the United States the other on the history of republics around the world o He used this research as the basis for a proposal he brought with him to Philadelphia o Virginia Plan Named after Madison s home state Classical learning said that a republican form of government required a small and homogenous state The Roman Republic or small country like Denmark Citizens who were too far apart or too different could not govern themselves successfully Conventional wisdom said the United States needed to have a very weak central government which should simply represent the states on certain matters they had in common Otherwise power should stay at the state or local level He believed it was possible to create an extended republic encompassing a diversity of people climates and customs Proposed that the United States should have a strong federal government Have 3 branches legislative executive and judicial with power to act on any issues of national concern The legislature or Congress would have 2 houses in which every state would be represented according to its population size or tax base The national legislature would have veto power over state laws Downloaded by Arya Shah apancake99 gmail com lOMoARcPSD 31101189 o Other delegates to the convention generally agreed with Madison that the Articles of Confederation had failed But they did not agree on what kind of government should replace them o In particular they disagreed about the best method of representation in the new Congress Congress o Representation was an important issue that influenced a host of other decisions including deciding how the national executive branch should work what specific powers the federal government should have and even what to do about the divisive issue of slavery o For more than a decade each state had enjoyed a single vote in the Continental o Small states like New Jersey and Delaware wanted to keep things that way o The Connecticut delegate Roger Sherman furthermore argued that members of Congress should be appointed by the state legislatures o Large states however preferred the Virginia Plan which would give their citizens far more power over the legislature branch o Roger Sherman suggested a compromise o Congress would have a lower house the House of Representatives in which members were assigned according to each state s population and an upper house

View Full Document

GSU HIST 1111 - Chapter 6 Notes

Download Chapter 6 Notes
Our administrator received your request to download this document. We will send you the file to your email shortly.
Loading Unlocking...

Join to view Chapter 6 Notes and access 3M+ class-specific study document.

We will never post anything without your permission.
Don't have an account?
Sign Up

Join to view Chapter 6 Notes and access 3M+ class-specific study document.


By creating an account you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms Of Use

Already a member?