Elliot’s Debates: Volume 1

Journal of the Federal Convention

Wednesday, July 11, 1787.

The amendment offered to the 2d paragraph of the report from the committee consisting of Mr. G. Morris, Mr. Gorham, Mr. Randolph, Mr. Rutledge, and Mr. King, being withdrawn, it was moved by Mr. Williamson, and seconded, to substitute the following resolution, namely:—

Resolved, That, in order to ascertain the alterations that may happen in the population and wealth of the several states, a census shall be taken of the free inhabitants of each state, and three fifths of the inhabitants of the other description, on the first year after this form of government shall have been adopted, and afterwards on every term of…years; and the legislature shall alter or augment the representation accordingly.”

It was moved and seconded to strike out the words “three fifths of;” which passed in the negative.

Yeas: Delaware, South Carolina, Georgia, 3. Nays: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, 7.

It was moved by Mr. Rutledge, and seconded, to postpone the consideration of the resolution proposed, in order to take up the following, namely:—

Resolved, That at the end of           years from the meeting of the legislature of the United States, and at the expiration of every          years thereafter, the legislature of the United States be required to apportion the representation of the several states, according to the principles of their wealth and population.”

On the question to postpone, it passed in the negative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Delaware, South Carolina, Georgia, 5. Nays: Connecticut, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, 5.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the 1st clause of the resolution, namely:—

“That, in order to ascertain the alterations that may happen in the population and wealth of the several states, a census shall be taken of the free inhabitants of each state;”

which passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, 6. Nays: Delaware, Maryland, South Carolina, Georgia, 4.

It was moved and seconded to adjourn. Passed in the negative.

Yea: Pennsylvania, 1. Nays: Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 9.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the following clause of the resolution, namely:—

“And three fifths of the inhabitants of other descriptions;”

which passed in the negative.

Yeas: Connecticut, Virginia, North Carolina, Georgia, 4. Nays: Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, South Carolina, 6.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the following clause of the resolution, namely:—

“On the first year after this form of government shall have been adopted;”

which passed in the affirmative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, 7. Nays: Connecticut, Maryland, Georgia, 3.

It was moved and seconded to fill up the blank with the word “fifteen;” which passed unanimously in the affirmative.

It was moved and seconded to add, after the words “fifteen years,” the words “at least;” which passed in the negative.

Yeas: Massachusetts, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, 5. Nays: Connecticut, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, 5.

It was moved and seconded to agree to the following clause of the resolution, namely: “And the legislature shall alter or augment the representation accordingly;” which passed unanimously in the affirmative.

On the question to agree to the resolution as amended, it paased unanimously in the negative.

And then the house adjourned till to-morrow, at 11 o’clock, A. M.

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Contents

General Overview

In 1787 and 1788, following the Constitutional Convention, a great debate took place throughout America over the Constitution that had been proposed.

In-Doors Debate

View in-depth studies of the Massachusetts, Virginia, and New York state ratifying conventions.

The Federal Pillars

View drawings of the federal pillars rising published by the Massachusetts Centinel during the ratification debate.

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The Stages of Ratification: An Interactive Timeline

View the six stages of the ratification of the Constitution with links to many other features on this site.

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Interactive Ratification Map

View interactive maps showing the breakdown of Federalist-Antifederalist strength at the state level during the Ratification debate.

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