The Origins Of The American Constitution

Autor: Michael G. Kammen
Publisher: Penguin Group USA
ISBN: 9780140087444
File Size: 56,43 MB
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Describes the evolution of the American Constitution by analyzing material from state constitutions, the Articles of Confederation, the Federalist and Anti-Federalist Papers, and the personal correspondence of Convention delegates

Colonial Origins Of The American Constitution

Autor: Donald S. Lutz
Publisher: Liberty Fund Inc.
ISBN:
File Size: 39,19 MB
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This landmark collection of eighty documents created by the American colonists--and not English officials--is the genesis of American fundamental law and constitutionalism. Included are all documents attempting to unite the colonies, beginning with the New England Confederation of 1643.

The American Constitutional Tradition

Autor: H. Lowell Brown
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 1683930487
File Size: 33,63 MB
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The book is a work of non-fiction. The book is a historical analysis of the evolution of a uniquely American constitutionalism that began with the original English royal charters for the exploration and exploitation of North America. When the U.S. Constitution was written in 1787, the accepted conception of a constitution was that of the British constitution, upon which the colonists had relied in asserting their rights with respect to the imperium, comprised of ancient documents, parliamentary enactments, administrative regulations, judicial pronouncements, and established custom. Of equal significance, the laws comprising the constitution did not differ from other statutes and as a consequence, there was no law endowed with greater sanctity than other legislative enactments. In framing the revolutionary state constitutions following the retreat of the crown governments in the colonies, as well as the later federal Constitution, the Revolutionaries fundamentally reconceived a constitution as being the single authoritative source of fundamental law that was superior to all other statutes, regulations, and judicial decisions, that was ratified by the states and that was subject to revision only through a formal amendment process. This new constitutional conception has been hailed as the great innovation of the revolutionary period, and deservedly so. This American constitutionalism had its origins in the now largely overlooked royal charters for the exploration of North America beginning with the charter granted to Sir Humphrey Gilbert by Elizabeth I in 1578. The book follows the development of this constitutional tradition from the early charters of the Virginia Companies and the covenants entered of the New England colonies, through the proprietary charters of the Middle Atlantic colonies. On the basis of those foundational documents, the colonists fashioned governments that came to be comprised not only of an executive, but an elected legislature and a judiciary. In those foundational documents and in the acts of the colonial legislatures, the settlers sought to harmonize their aspirations for just institutions and individual rights with the exigencies and imperatives of an alien and often hostile environment. When the colonies faced the withdrawal of the crown governments in 1775, they drew on their experience, which they formalized in written constitutions. This uniquely American constitutional tradition of the charters, covenants and state constitutions was the foundation of the federal Constitution and of the process by which the Constitution was written and ratified a decade later.

The Origins Of The Necessary And Proper Clause

Autor: Gary Lawson
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 1139489844
File Size: 17,70 MB
Format: PDF
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The Necessary and Proper Clause is one of the most important parts of the US Constitution. Today this short thirty-nine-word paragraph is cited as the legal foundation for much of the modern federal government. Through three independent lines of research, the authors trace the lineage of the Necessary and Proper Clause to the everyday law of the Founding Era - the same law that American founders such as Madison, Hamilton, and Washington applied in their daily lives. Origins of the Necessary and Proper Clause are found in law-governing agencies, public administration, and corporations. Moreover, all of those areas were undergirded by common principles of fiduciary responsibility - reflecting the Founders' view that a public office is truly a public trust. This explains the choice of language in the clause and provides clues about its meaning. This book thus serves as a reference source for scholars seeking to understand the intellectual foundations of one of the Constitution's most important clauses.

The Bill Of Rights And The States

Autor: Patrick T. Conley
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 9780945612292
File Size: 45,74 MB
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Fourteen individual state essays elucidate the complexitites of local and regional interests that shaped the debate over individual rights and the eventual adoption of the Bill of Rights.

Early New England

Autor: David A. Weir
Publisher: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing
ISBN: 9780802813527
File Size: 63,51 MB
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The idea of covenant was at the heart of early New England society. In this singular book David Weir explores the origins and development of covenant thought in America by analyzing the town and church documents written and signed by seventeenth-century New Englanders. Unmatched in the breadth of its scope, this study takes into account all of the surviving covenants in all of the New England colonies. Weir's comprehensive survey of seventeenth-century covenants leads to a more complex picture of early New England than what emerges from looking at only a few famous civil covenants like the Mayflower Compact. His work shows covenant theology being transformed into a covenantal vision for society but also reveals the stress and strains on church-state relationships that eventually led to more secularized colonial governments in eighteenth-century New England. He concludes that New England colonial society was much more "English" and much less "American" than has often been thought, and that the New England colonies substantially mirrored religious and social change in Old England.

The Revolutionary Constitution

Autor: David J. Bodenhamer
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 019991303X
File Size: 66,64 MB
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The framers of the Constitution chose their words carefully when they wrote of a more perfect union--not absolutely perfect, but with room for improvement. Indeed, we no longer operate under the same Constitution as that ratified in 1788, or even the one completed by the Bill of Rights in 1791--because we are no longer the same nation. In The Revolutionary Constitution, David J. Bodenhamer provides a comprehensive new look at America's basic law, integrating the latest legal scholarship with historical context to highlight how it has evolved over time. The Constitution, he notes, was the product of the first modern revolution, and revolutions are, by definition, moments when the past shifts toward an unfamiliar future, one radically different from what was foreseen only a brief time earlier. In seeking to balance power and liberty, the framers established a structure that would allow future generations to continually readjust the scale. Bodenhamer explores this dynamic through seven major constitutional themes: federalism, balance of powers, property, representation, equality, rights, and security. With each, he takes a historical approach, following their changes over time. For example, the framers wrote multiple protections for property rights into the Constitution in response to actions by state governments after the Revolution. But twentieth-century courts--and Congress--redefined property rights through measures such as zoning and the designation of historical landmarks (diminishing their commercial value) in response to the needs of a modern economy. The framers anticipated just such a future reworking of their own compromises between liberty and power. With up-to-the-minute legal expertise and a broad grasp of the social and political context, this book is a tour de force of Constitutional history and analysis.