Scene at the Signing of the Constitution

by Howard Chandler Christy

About this Painting

Move your mouse over a delegate to see that delegate’s name and state. Click on a delegate for further biographical information.

Signed: l.r. Howard Chandler Christy, Sail Loft, U.S. Navy Yard, Washington, D.C., April 1940 (This painting hangs in the east stairway in the House wing of the United States Capitol. More information about the painting……)


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Notes: 73 delegates were appointed to the Constitutional Convention.

18 declined their appointments: Richard Henry Lee (Virginia), Thomas Nelson (Virginia), Patrick Henry (Virginia), Abraham Clark (New Jersey), John Neilson (New Jersey), Richard Caswell (North Carolina), Willie Jones (North Carolina), George Watson (Georgia), Nathaniel Pendleton (Georgia), Henry Laurens (South Carolina), Francis Dana (Massachusetts), Gabriel Duvall (Maryland), Robert Hansen Harrison (Maryland), Thomas Stone (Maryland), Charles Caroll (Maryland),  Thomas Sim Lee (Maryland), John Pickering (New Hampshire), and Benjamin West (New Hampshire).

Only 39 of the 55 delegates to the Constitutional Convention are pictured in the Christy painting.

Not included are the 3 delegates who did not sign the Constitution: Edmund J. Randolph (Virginia), George Mason (Virginia), and Elbridge Gerry (Massachusetts). Also not included are the 13 delegates who left the convention early: Oliver Ellsworth (Connecticut), William Houston (Georgia), William L. Pierce (Georgia), Luther Martin (Maryland), John F. Mercer (Maryland), Caleb Strong (Massachusetts), William C. Houston (New Jersey), John Lansing, Jr. (New York), Robert Yates (New York), William R. Davie (North Carolina), Alexander Martin (North Carolina), James McClurg (Virginia), and George Wythe (Virginia).

Contents

Introduction

The year was 1787. The place: the State House in Philadelphia. This is the story of the framing of the federal Constitution.

The Convention

Read the four-act drama and day-by-day summary by Gordon Lloyd, as well as Madison’s Notes on the Convention.

Interactive Map of Historic Philadelphia in the Late 18th Century

Learn about historic Philadelphia and where the founders stayed, ate, and met.

View Interactive

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