The last battle of the American Revolution was the Battle of Yorktown. The British surrendered here. America now had independence and needed a government for their newly independent country.
America formed the Articles of Confederation as their first government. The Articles were allowed to declare war, handle foreign affairs, appoint military officers, and coin money.Some weaknesses of the Articles were fighting between the states, money problems, difficult to trade, and other countries taking advantage of us.
The Constitutional Convention
We think the New Jersey Plan would work great.
Why can't we just compromise!
Five new states became part of the United States.These states were Wisconsin, Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Ohio. In order to become at state, 60,000+ people had to live their before they requested statehood to Congress. This process was called the Northwest Ordinance.
After the war, the states fell into a depression.Daniel Shay, who fought at Bunker Hill and Saratoga, led a group to attack a courthouse in Massachusetts. He was upset because of the Articles of Confederation were not working, and this rebellion led more people to believe the Articles were weak. Finally, the ,militia drove them off.
The delegates from each state held a Constitutional Convention in 1787, in Philadelphia. The goal of this convention was to revise the Articles of Confederation. Some people who attended include John Adams, Thomas Jefferson, and John Hancock. It was very hard to come to a conclusion about what to do becuase many ideas were offered, like the Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan, but none suited both large and small states
Well, what about the Virginia Plan?
I hate the Articles!
Finally, on September 17, 1787 the Constitution was signed with much compromise from everyone. The Virginia Plan and the New Jersey Plan were merged together into something called the Great Compromise, which was Roger Sherman's idea. We had finally established what kind of government our country would be using. A few delegates refused to sign the Constitution, but majority ruled.