The U.S Constitution




Wikipedia : Constitution of the United States



Created September 17, 1787
Presented September 28, 1787
Ratified June 21, 1788
Date effective March 4, 1789



constitutioncenter.org : The day the Constitution was ratified


On June 21, 1788, the Constitution became the official framework of the government of the United States of America when New Hampshire became the ninth of 13 states to ratify it.




Three months later, on September 17, 1787, the Convention concluded with the signing (by 38 out of 41 delegates present) of the new U.S. Constitution.




After ratification, Congress set dates for the first federal elections and the official implementation of the Constitution. Elections were set to take place from Monday, December 15, 1788, to Saturday, January 10, 1789, and the new government was set to begin on March 4, 1789.


March 4: A forgotten huge day in American history


The significance of March 4 predates the Constitution. The Confederation Congress, which operated under the Articles of Confederation (our first Constitution) picked March 4, 1789, as the day it handed off power to the new constitutional government.




loc.gov : Primary Documents in American History

The Bill of Rights

On June 8, 1789, James Madison introduced his proposed amendments to the Constitution, which would eventually become known as the Bill of Rights.




Wikipedia : United States Bill of Rights



United States Bill of Rights
Created September 25, 1789
Ratified December 15, 1791



constitutioncenter.org : The day the Constitution was ratified




The Constitution, however, was still evolving.


Madison introduced 19 amendments to the Constitution born from the Massachusetts Compromise, of which Congress adopted twelve on September 25, 1789, to send forth to the states for ratification.




Ten of those amendments, known as the Bill of Rights, were ratified on December 15, 1791.




uslegal.com : Amendment II


The Second Amendment to the American Constitution states :


“A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”




Wikipedia : United States Declaration of Independence


The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House (now known as Independence Hall) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776.


The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule.


With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America.


The declaration was signed by representatives from New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia.


The Lee Resolution for independence was passed on July 2 with no opposing votes.


The Committee of Five had drafted the Declaration to be ready when Congress voted on independence. John Adams, a leader in pushing for independence, had persuaded the committee to select Thomas Jefferson to compose the original draft of the document,[2] which Congress edited to produce the final version.


The Declaration was a formal explanation of why Congress had voted to declare independence from Great Britain, more than a year after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War.


Adams wrote to his wife Abigail,

"The Second Day of July 1776, will be the most memorable Epocha, in the History of America"[3] 

– although Independence Day is actually celebrated on July 4, the date that the wording of the Declaration of Independence was approved.




constitutionfacts.com : Declaration of Independence Dates to Remember



April 19, 1775

The Revolutionary War begins with shots fired at Lexington and Concord in Massachusetts.


June 7, 1776


Richard Henry Lee introduces a motion in a meeting of the Continental Congress that the United States is and should be declared free from ties to Great Britain. Delegates disagree about the wisdom of this idea, which comes to be called the "Lee Resolution." Eventually, the Congress appoints a Committee of Five to draft a Declaration of Independence for consideration.


June 11, 1776


John Adams convenes the Committee of Five to draft a Declaration of Independence. The five members of the committee are John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Robert Livingston and Roger Sherman. The committee chooses Jefferson to write the first draft.


Two days in mid-June, 1776


Jefferson writes the first draft of the Declaration. He said later that he never meant to say things that "had never been said before." Instead, he tries to capture "the common sense of the subject, in terms so plain and firm as to command their assent."


July 2, 1776


The Continental Congress votes to declare independence from Great Britain, formally adopting the Lee Resolution. The next day John Adams writes in a letter to his wife that, "The second day of July, 1776, will be the most memorable epocha in the history of America. . . . It ought to be solemnized with pomp and parade, with shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of this continent to the other, from this time forward, forevermore."


July 3, 1776

The Continental Congress begins debating and editing the draft Declaration, eventually making 86 edits and cutting the length by about a fourth.


July 4, 1776

The Continental Congress approves the final draft of the Declaration, formalizing what had already been decided on July 2. Congress hires printer John Dunlap to print copies of the Declaration to be distributed throughout the colonies.


July 5, 1776

Dunlap delivers his 200 copies of the Declaration (which are now called "Dunlap Broadsides"). One copy is officially entered into the Congressional Journal and the other copies are distributed throughout the colonies.


July 6, 1776

The Pennsylvania Evening Post becomes the first newspaper to reprint the whole Declaration, but news of the July 2 decision to declare independence has already been widely reported and various celebrations and discussions are already taking place throughout the colonies.


July 8, 1776

The Declaration is read publicly to the people of Philadelphia. Around this time, Congress gets around to sending a copy of the Declaration to its emissary in Europe to be distributed to the various European governments. However, the original letter is lost and the Declaration isn't formally delivered to Great Britain and the rest of Europe until November, when news of the Declaration had already reached Europe.


July 9, 1776

New York finally approves the Declaration. It is the last of the 13 colonies to do so.


July 19, 1776

The Continental Congress decides to have an "engrossed" copy of the Declaration made, meaning a clean, readable, handwritten copy on parchment. Timothy Matlack, who was the assistant to the Secretary of Congress, probably makes the copy. (This is the copy now housed at the National Archives.)


August 2, 1776

Those delegates who had voted in favor of independence and who are in attendance that day sign the engrossed copy of the Declaration. Fifty delegates sign on this day. Six more will sign later.