The Supreme Court: Core Cases

“Now We Can Begin”

Source: The Liberator, December 1920. Most women will agree that August 23, the day when…

The American Revolution

Captain John Parker, commander of the Lexington militia, had received Paul Revere’s warning. Great Britain’s…

Declaration of the Causes and Necessity of Taking Up Arms

Source: The Declaration as Adopted by Congress, [6 July 1775], Founders Online, National Archives).  https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Jefferson/01-01-02-0113-0005 IF IT…

“The Farmer Refuted…”

Source: Alexander Hamilton, The Farmer Refuted, &c., [February 23,] 1775, Founders Online, National Archives (first…

“Give me liberty or give me death!”

Source: Patrick Henry, Speech on a Resolution to Put Virginia into a State of Defense,…

Common Sense

Source: Moncure Daniel Conway, ed., The Writings of Thomas Paine, 4 vols. (New York: G.…

Philadelphia Welcomes the First Continental Congress

Source: Dunlap’s Pennsylvania Packet or, the General Advertiser (Philadelphia), September 19, 1774. On Friday last[1]…

An Account of the Boston Tea Party

Source: “An Impartial Observer,” Boston Gazette, December 20, 1773. Having accidentally arrived at Boston upon…

A Summary View of the Rights of British America

Source: [Thomas Jefferson,] A Summary View of the Rights of British America: Set Forth in…

The Association Enacted by the First Continental Congress

Source: Worthington Chauncey Ford, et al., eds., Journals of the Continental Congress, 1774–1789, 34 vols.…

Rights of the British Colonies Asserted and Proved

Source: Rights of the British Colonies Asserted and Proved, in The Collected Political Writings of…

Resolutions of the Stamp Act Congress

Source: Hezekiah Niles, ed., Principles and Acts of the Revolution in America… (Baltimore: William Ogden…

We Shall be under the Domination of a Riotous Mob

Source: Peter Force, ed., American Archives: A Documentary History of the English Colonies, 4th ser.,…

The Rights of the Colonists

Source: Samuel Adams, “The Rights of the Colonists,” in Harry Alonzo Cushing, ed., The Writings…

Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania, Letter II

Source: Paul Leicester Ford, ed., The Writings of John Dickinson (Philadelphia: Historical Society of Pennsylvania,…

Charleston Nonimportation Agreement

Source: Charles McLean Andrews, “Boston Merchants and the Non-Importation Agreement,” Publications of the Colonial Society…

Treaty of Paris

Source: Richard Peters, et al., eds., The Public Statutes at Large of the United States…

Petition of the Philadelphia Synagogue to the Council of Censors of Pennsylvania

Source: “Petition of the Philadelphia Synagogue to the Council of Censors of Pennsylvania,” The Freeman’s…

Speech Against Writs of Assistance

Source: John Adams’s Reconstruction of Otis’s Speech in the Writs of Assistance Case, in The…

Stratford, Connecticut’s Thomas Gage—and Monmouth County, New Jersey’s Dunmore

Source: New-England Chronicle (Boston), May 30, 1776. The following odd affair happened at Stratford on…

“Remember the Ladies”

Sources: Abigail Adams to John Adams, March 31, 1776, Founders Online, National Archives, https://founders.archives.gov/documents/Adams/04-01-02-0241; J.…

Thoughts on Government

Source: John Adams, Thoughts on Government…. (Philadelphia: John Dunlap, 1776), in Charles Francis Adams, ed.,…

Virginia Declaration of Rights

Source: Francis Newton Thorpe, ed., The Federal and State Constitutions, Colonial Charters, and Other Organic…

Draft of The Declaration of Independence

Source: H. A. Washington, ed., The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, 9 vols. (Washington, D.C.: Taylor…

Celebrations of American Independence in Boston and Watertown, Massachusetts

Source: The American Gazette, or the Constitutional Journal (Salem, Mass.), July 23, 1776. WATERTOWN, JULY…

The American Crisis

Source: Moncure Daniel Conway, ed., The Writings of Thomas Paine, 4 vols. (New York: G.…

Massachusetts Antislavery Petition

Source: “To the Honorable Counsel & House of [Representa]tives of the State of Massachusetts Bay…

Articles of Confederation

Source: Charles Tansill, ed., Documents Illustrative of the Formation of the Union of the United…

Notes on the State of Virginia

Source: Thomas Jefferson, Notes on the State of Virginia (London: John Stockdale, 1787), 270–75. https://archive.org/details/notesonstateofvi1787jeff/page/270…

A View of the Controversy between Great Britain and her Colonies

Source: A. W. Farmer, A View of the Controversy between Great-Britain and her Colonies (New…

Chapter 18: Urban Growth: The Pullman Strike

A. United States Strike Commission, Report on the Chicago Strike, June-July 1894, December 10, 1894…

Religious Liberty: Core Court Cases

Amendment I.  Ratified December 15, 1791 Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion,…

West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette

Source: 319 U.S. 586 (1943), https://www.law.cornell.edu/supremecourt/text/319/624. All footnotes added by the editors. JUSTICE JACKSON delivered…

“IS IT A CRIME FOR A U.S. CITIZEN TO VOTE?”

Susan B. Anthony, “Is It a Crime for a U.S. Citizen to Vote?” in Rochester…

Causes of the Civil War

This volume of primary documents on the causes of the Civil War presents the history…

Democratic Party Platforms

Source: 1860 Democratic Party Platform, online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The American…

South Carolina’s Declaration of the Causes of Secession

Source: Declaration of the Immediate Causes Which Induce and Justify the Secession of South Carolina…

Republican Party Platform

Source: Republican Party Platform of 1860, online by Gerhard Peters and John T. Woolley, The…

Address before the Wisconsin State Agricultural Society

Source:  Life and Works of Abraham Lincoln, Centenary Edition, Volume II, Marion Mills Miller, ed.,…

Reply to the Dred Scott Decision

Source: Frank Crosby, LIFE OF ABRAHAM LINCOLN, HIS EARLY HISTORY AND POLITICAL CAREER; TOGETHER WITH…

The Webster-Hayne Debates

Source: Daniel Webster, The Webster-Hayne Debate on the Nature of the Constitution: Selected Documents, ed. Herman Belz…

Letter to John Holmes

Source: Thomas Jefferson to John Holmes. -04-22, 1820. Manuscript/Mixed Material. Library of Congress, https://www.loc.gov/item/mtjbib023795/. I…

Speech on Abolition Petitions

Source: John C. Calhoun, Speeches of John C. Calhoun: delivered in the Congress of the…

“On the Constitution and the Union”

Source: William Lloyd Garrison, “The Great Crisis,” The Liberator, 52, 2 (December 29, 1832), 206–207.…

Compromise of 1850

Source: Congressional Globe, 31st Congress, 1st Session, 244–47, https://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=llcg&fileName=022/llcg022.db&recNum=331. Clay presented his resolutions in a…

Speech on the Oregon Bill

Source: Speech of Mr. Calhoun, of South Carolina, on the Oregon Bill, Delivered in the…

Appeal of the Independent Democrats in Congress to the American People

Source: Congressional Globe, Senate, 33rd Congress, First Session, 281–282, https://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage. As senators and representatives in…

“What to the Slave Is the Fourth of July?”

Source: Frederick Douglass: Selected Speeches and Writings, ed. Philip S. Foner (Chicago: Lawrence Hill, 1999),…

“An Irrepressible Conflict”

Source: The Irrepressible Conflict: A Speech Delivered at Rochester, Monday, Oct. 25, 1858 (New York:…
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