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The Convention

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Enter into the four-act drama of the Constitutional Convention

In the introduction to his Notes of the Debates of the Federal Convention, James Madison wrote:

“Of the ability & intelligence of those who composed the Convention, the debates & proceedings may be a test; as the character of the work which was the offspring of their deliberations must be tested by the experience of the future, added to that of the nearly half century which has passed.”

We invite you to participate in Madison’s “test” by exploring the materials below.

The Constitutional Convention as a Four Act Drama

Follow the rising and falling action of the delegates’ deliberations.

Day-by-Day Summary of the Convention

Scan decisions as they unfold with our table of the votes taken each day.

James Madison’s Notes on the DebatesĀ in the Federal Convention of 1787

Read the most complete contemporary account of the events of 1787.