The Constitutional Convention as a Four-Act Drama: Act 2

On September 16, 2015
This course consists of four session, each rooted in a video presentation by Dr. Lloyd in front of a teacher audience, focused on a specific topic and drawing from a selection of relevant documents.
Each session’s post includes a list of Scenes within the given Act, with dates listed within each Scene – this helps expand on the metaphor of the Constitutional Convention as a drama. Most every day includes a link to information about what happened on that day, mostly drawn from Madison’s Debates, the most comprehensive and accurate record of the Convention.
As you watch the video for each session, take notes on Dr. Lloyd’s insights about the Convention, the contributions of different delegates, topics discussed, and decisions made. Then expand on your notes by going through the different documents linked from the post. This way, you’ll learn directly from Dr. Lloyd, and you’ll clearly see where his ideas are found in the documents.
Scene 1: Derailment over Representation of States and People
  • June 20 John Lansing questions legality of the Amended Plan
  • June 21 Specifics of House Representation discussed
  • June 22 Specifics of House Representation discussed
  • June 23 Ineligibility requirements for members of Congress
  • June 25 The purpose of the Senate
  • June 26 Specifics of Senate Representation discussed
  • June 27 Resolutions 7 and 8 discussed
  • June 28 Luther Martin resumes his “discourse” on the role of the States
Scene 2: Contours of Compromise: Partly Federal, Partly National
  • June 29 Ellsworth: “we were partly national; partly federal”
  • June 30 Loose talk of division and disunion
  • July 2 Creation of the Gerry Committee
Scene 3: Independence Day Contemplation
  • July 4 “When in the Course of Human Events”
Scene 4: The Gerry Committee Compromise Proposal Discussed
  • July 5 The Compromise Proposal has three components
  • July 6 Debating the merits of proportional representation
  • July 7 Sherman reinforces case for equal representation of States in Senate
  • July 9 Distributing 56 seats in the House to the 13 States
  • July 10 North – South, Large – Small discussion
  • July 11 The census and representation
  • July 12 “Blacks equal to the whites in the ratio of representation?”
  • July 13 Representation in the SenateConfederation Congress Passes the Northwest Ordinance
  • July 14 Does partly national, partly federal make sense?
Scene 5: Decision Day on the Connecticut Compromise
  • July 16 Connecticut Compromise accepted (5 – 4 – 1)
Scene 6: Return to the Amended Virginia Plan; Committee of Detail Created
  • July 17 The Supreme Law of the Land and the Presidency
  • July 18 Discussion of Resolutions 11 – 16
  • July 19 Reconsideration of the Presidency
  • July 20 More disputation over the Presidency
  • July 21 The Council of Revision revisited
  • July 23 Resolutions 17 – 19 debated
  • July 24 Controversy over the Presidency
  • July 25 More discussion on the Presidency
  • July 26 Constitutional Convention adjourns with the creation of a 5 member Committee of Detail

Session 10: The Federalist Papers – The Sum of Power and the Separation of Powers


Session 11: The Federalist Papers – Legislative, Executive, and Judicial Branches

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