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Articles of Confederation Articles of Confederation

Articles Background • 1 st constitution for the colonies • Confederation form of government Articles Background • 1 st constitution for the colonies • Confederation form of government o Very similar in structure to the wartime Continental Congress • States retained “Sovereignty, freedom and independence, and every power, jurisdiction and right” • Primary purpose was to form a cohesive defensefocused on winning the war

Articles- provisions • Unicameral legislature- one house • Each state sends delegates, but gets Articles- provisions • Unicameral legislature- one house • Each state sends delegates, but gets only one vote per state • States obligated to send funds to pay government officials and the military • States obligated to send troops to man and maintain a central defense • 9 state votes to pass any law, unanimous to amend • No executive or Judicial entities • Unilateral trade between states and other countries

State Governments post 1776 • Fearful of political authority – difficult to tax o State Governments post 1776 • Fearful of political authority – difficult to tax o Members elected annually in 10 states o Every 6 months in CT and RI o Every 2 years in SC • Governors’ power severely limited o PA removed position completely • Voting rights dependent on property ownership

Western Policy • A. O. C asserted Congress’ control over Western lands • Land Western Policy • A. O. C asserted Congress’ control over Western lands • Land west of PA, North of Ohio river and east of Mississippi was divided and sold o Slavery forbidden o Religious freedom, trial by jury guarenteed • Set up standards in which new states could be created o 60 k

Accomplishments under Articles • Set up the Post Office (only government agency that is Accomplishments under Articles • Set up the Post Office (only government agency that is self-supporting) • Created the post roads • Set up a system of weights and measures

Problems with the Articles States not fairly represented in the Congress No central authority Problems with the Articles States not fairly represented in the Congress No central authority to negotiate with Foreign countries No authority to make states comply with legislation No power to collect taxes or impel troops into service No common currency Hard to pass legislation or amend A. O. C

Incidents • Shay’s Rebellion- Massachusetts farmers rebel against foreclosures on property. o MA needed Incidents • Shay’s Rebellion- Massachusetts farmers rebel against foreclosures on property. o MA needed tax revenue to pay off debts • Spain closes Mississippi River o Exposes north/south divide o Disagreement between states o Secession discussed • Newburgh Conspiracy o Military frustrated o Washington halts