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American Founding

$12.99
Overview & List of Documents

This volume presents the documents necessary to understand the essential ideas and debates that shaped the founding of the American civic order. It begins with documents that display both the problems that led to the calling of the Constitutional Convention and the ideas that shaped the debates in Philadelphia. It concludes with two documents – Washington’s Inaugural Address and Madison’s speech on the amendments to the Constitution (the Bill of Rights) – that show the new government beginning to function. The heart of the book is the documents presenting the debates at the Constitutional Convention and the debates over ratification. With its document introductions, annotations, and helpful appendices, this collection is an indispensable resource for understanding the American Founding.

  • Virginia Declaration of Rights and Constitution (June 12 and 29, 1776)
  • Draft of The Declaration of Independence (July 2 - 4, 1776)
  • The Articles of Confederation (1781)
  • James Madison, “Vices of the Political System of the United States” (April 1787)
  • The Virginia Plan (May 29, 1787)
  • Introducing a Fateful Compromise: A Debate on Property, and the Revised Virginia Plan (June 13 and 15, 1787)
  • Return to Starting Point: The New Jersey Plan (June 15, 1787)
  • The Hamilton Plan (June 18, 1787)
  • Partly National, Partly Federal (June 29 - 30, 1787)
  • The Gerry Committee Report (July 2 and 5, 1787)
  • The Three-Fifths Clause Revisited (July 11 - 14 and 16, 1787)
  • The Committee of Detail Report (July 23 - 24 and August 6, 1787)
  • The Slave Trade Clause (August 21, 22, 24 and 25, 1787)
  • The Fugitive Slave Clause (July 14; August 6, 28 and 29; and September 12, 15 and 17, 1787)
  • Gerry, Mason, and Randolph Decline to Sign the Constitution (September 10, 12, 15 and 17, 1787)
  • Centinel I (October 5, 1787)
  • Brutus I (October 18, 1787)
  • Publius (Alexander Hamilton), Federalist 1 (October 27, 1787)
  • Publius (Alexander Hamilton), Federalist 9 (November 21, 1787)
  • Publius (James Madison), Federalist 10 (November 22, 1787)
  • Publius (James Madison), Federalist 51 (February 6, 1788)
  • Brutus XV (March 20, 1788)
  • Publius (Alexander Hamilton), Federalist 78 (May 28, 1788)
  •  The Jefferson - Madison Exchange (December 20, 1787 to March 15, 1789)
  • George Washington, First Inaugural Address (April 30, 1789)
  • James Madison Argues for Constitutional Amendments (June 8, 1789)