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religious liberty, which form the basis whereon these republics,
their laws and constitutions, are erected; to fix and establish those
principles as the basis of all laws, constitutions, and governments,
which forever hereafter shall be formed in the said territory; to
provide, also, for the establishment of States, and permanent government
therein, and for their admission to a share in the Federal councils on
an equal footing with the original States, at as early periods as may be
consistent with the general interest:

SEC. 14. It is hereby ordained and declared, by the authority aforesaid,
that the following articles shall be considered as articles of compact,
between the original States and the people and States in the said
territory, and forever remain unalterable, unless by common consent, to


No person, demeaning himself in a peaceable and orderly manner, shall
ever be molested on account of his mode of worship, or religious
sentiments, in the said territories.


The inhabitants of the said territory shall always be entitled to the
benefits of the writs of habeas corpus, and of the trial by jury; of a
propo[r]tionate representation of the people in the legislature, and
of judicial proceedings according to the course of the common law. All
persons shall be bailable, unless for capital offences, where the proof
shall be evident, or the presumption great. All fines shall be moderate;
and no cruel or unusual punishments shall be inflicted. No man shall be
deprived of his liberty or property, but by the judgment of his peers,
or the law of the land, and should the public exigencies make it
necessary, for the common preservation, to take any person's property,
or to demand his particular services, full compensation shall be made
for the same. And, in the just preservation of rights and property, it
is understood and declared, that no law ought ever to be made or
have force in the said territory, that shall, in any manner whatever,
interfere with or affect private contracts, or engagements, bona fide,
and without fraud previously formed.


Religion, morality, and knowledge being necessary to good government
and the happiness of mankind, schools and the means of education shall
forever be encouraged. The utmost good faith shall always be observed
towards the Indians; their lands and property shall never be taken from
them without their consent; and in their property, rights, and liberty
they never shall be invaded or disturbed, unless in just and lawful wars
authorized by Congress; but laws founded in justice and humanity shall,
from time to time, be made, for preventing wrongs being done to them,
and for preserving peace and friendship with them.

ARTICLE IV. The said territory, and the States which may be formed
therein, shall forever remain a part of this confederacy of the United
States of America, subject to the Articles of Confederation, and to such
alterations therein as shall be constitutionally made; and to all
the acts and ordinances of the United States in Congress assembled,
conformable thereto. The inhabitants and settlers in the said territory
shall be subject to pay a part of the Federal debts, contracted, or to
be contracted, and a proportional part of the expenses of government to
be apportioned on them by Congress, according to the same common rule
and measure by which apportionments thereof shall be made on the other
States; and the taxes for paying their proportion shall be laid and
levied by the authority and direction of the legislatures of the
district, or districts, or new States, as in the original States, within
the time agreed upon by the United States in Congress assembled. The
legislatures of those districts, or new States, shall never interfere
with the primary disposal of the soil by the United States in Congress
assembled, nor with any regulations Congress may find necessary for
securing the title in such soil to the bona-fide purchasers. No tax
shall be imposed on lands the property of the United States; and in no
case shall non-resident proprietors be taxed higher than residents. The
navigable waters leading into the Mississippi and Saint Lawrence, and
the carrying places between the same, shall be common highways, and
forever free, as well to the inhabitants of the said territory as to the
citizens of the United States, and those of any other States that may
be admitted into the confederacy, without any tax, impost, or duty


There shall be formed in the said territory not less than three nor more
than five States; and the boundaries of the States, as soon as Virginia
shall alter her act of cession and consent to the same, shall become
fixed and established as follows, to wit: The western State, in the said
territory, shall be bounded by the Mississippi, the Ohio, and the Wabash
Rivers; a direct line drawn from the Wabash and Post Vincents, due
north, to the territorial line between the United States and Canada; and
by the said territorial line to the Lake of the Woods and Mississippi.
The middle State shall be bounded by the said direct line, the Wabash
from Post Vincents to the Ohio, by the Ohio, by a direct line drawn due
north from the mouth of the Great Miami to the said territorial line,
and by the said territorial line. The eastern State shall be bounded
by the last-mentioned direct line, the Ohio, Pennsylvania, and the said
territorial line: Provided, however, And it is further understood and
declared, that the boundaries of these three States shall be subject so
far to be altered, that, if Congress shall hereafter find it expedient,
they shall have authority to form one or two States in that part of the
said territory which lies north of an east and west line drawn through
the southerly bend or extreme of Lake Michigan. And whenever any of the
said States shall have sixty thousand free inhabitants therein, such
State shall be admitted, by its delegates, into the Congress of the
United States, on an equal footing with the original States, in
all respects whatever; and shall be at liberty to form a permanent
constitution and State government: Provided, The constitution and
government, so to be formed, shall be republican, and in conformity to
the principles contained in these articles, and, so far as it can be
consistent with the general interest of the confederacy, such admission
shall be allowed at an earlier period, and when there may be a less
number of free inhabitants in the State than sixty thousand.


There shall be neither slavery nor involuntary servitude in the said
territory, otherwise than in the punishment of crimes, whereof the
party shall have been duly convicted: Provided always, That any person
escaping into the same, from whom labor or service is lawfully claimed
in any one of the original States, such fugitive may be lawfully
reclaimed, and conveyed to the person claiming his or her labor or
service as aforesaid.

Be it ordained by the authority aforesaid, That the resolutions of the
23d of April, 1784, relative to the subject of this ordinance, be, and
the same are hereby, repealed, and declared null and void.

Done by the United States, in Congress assembled, the 13th day of July,
in the year of our Lord 1787, and of their sovereignty and independence
the twelfth.


WE THE PEOPLE Of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect
Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the
common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings
of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this
CONSTITUTION for the United States of America.


SECTION. 1. All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a
Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and House
of Representatives.

SECTION. 2. 1. The House of Representatives shall be composed of Members
chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the
Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for
Electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature.

2. No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to
the Age of twenty-five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the
United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that
State in which he shall be chosen. 3. [Representatives and direct Taxes
shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included
within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall
be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including
those bound to Service for a Term of Years, and excluding Indians not
taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.] The actual Enumeration shall
be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of
the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in
such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The Number of Representatives
shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall
have at Least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall
be made, the State of New Hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three,
Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one,
Connecticut five, New York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight,
Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South
Carolina five, and Georgia three.

4. When vacancies happen in the Representation from any State, the
Executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such

5. The House of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other
Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment.

SECTION. 3. 1. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two
Senators from each State, chosen by the Legislature thereof, for six
Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote.

2. Immediately after they shall be assembled in Consequence of the first
Election, they shall be divided as equally as may be into three Classes.
The Seats of the Senators of the first Class shall be vacated at the
Expiration of the second year, of the second Class at the Expiration of
the fourth Year, and of the third Class at the Expiration of the
sixth Year, so that one-third may be chosen every second Year; and if
Vacancies happen by Resignation, or otherwise, during the Recess of
the Legislature of any State, the Executive thereof may make temporary
Appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature, which shall then
fill such Vacancies.

3. No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age
of thi[r]ty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States,
and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for
which he shall be chosen.

4. The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the
Senate, but shall have no Vote, unless they be equally divided.

5. The Senate shall chuse their other Officers, and also a President pro
tempore, in the Absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise
the Office of President of the United States.

6. The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When
sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When
the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall
preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two
thirds of the Members present.

7. Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to
removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office
of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States: but the Party
convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial,
Judgment and Punishment, according to Law.

SECTION. 4. 1. The Times, Places and Manner of holding Elections for
Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the
Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or
alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators.

2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Year, and such
Meeting shall be on the first Monday in December, unless they shall by
Law appoint a different Day.

SECTION. 5. 1. Each House shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns
and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall
constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller Number may adjourn
from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of
absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each House
may provide.

2. Each House may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its
Members for disorderly Behavior, and, with the Concurrence of two
thirds, expel a Member.

3. Each House shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time
to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment
require Secrecy; and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either House
on any question shall, at the Desire of one fifth of those present, be
entered on the Journal.

4. Neither House, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the
Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other
Place than that in which the two Houses shall be sitting.

SECTION. 6. 1. The Senators and Representatives shall receive a
Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out
of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except
Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest
during their Attendance at the Session of their respective Houses, and
in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in
either House, they shall not be questioned in any other Place.

2. No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was
elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the
United States, which shall have been created, or the Emoluments whereof
shall have been encreased during such time; and no Person holding any
Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either House during
his Continuance in Office.

SECTION. 7. 1. All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the
House of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with
Amendments as on other Bills.

2. Every Bill which shall have passed the House of Representatives and
the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President
of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he
shall return it, with his Objections to that House in which it shall
have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their
Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration
two thirds of that House shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent,
together with the Objections, to the other House, by which it shall
likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that House,
it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both Houses
shall be determined by Yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons
voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each
House respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President
within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented
to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it,
unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which
Case it shall not be a Law.

3. Every Order, Resolution, or Vote to which the Concurrence of the
Senate and House of Representatives may be necessary (except on a
question of Adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the
United States; and before the Same shall take Effect, shall be approved
by him, or being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by two thirds
of the Senate and House of Representatives, according to the Rules and
Limitations prescribed in the Case of a Bill.

SECTION. 8. 1. The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes,
Duties, Imposts and Excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the
common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties,
Imposts and Excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

2. To borrow Money on the credit of the United States;

3. To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several
States, and with the Indian Tribes;

4. To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on
the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States;

5. To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and
fix the Standard of Weights and Measures;

6. To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and
current Coin of the United States;

7. To establish Post Offices and post Roads;

8. To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for
limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their
respective Writings and Discoveries;

9. To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court;

10. To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high
Seas, and Offences against the Law of Nations;

11. To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules
concerning Captures on Land and Water;

12. To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that
Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years;

13. To provide and maintain a Navy;

14. To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and
naval Forces;

15. To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the
Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions;

16. To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia,
and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of
the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment
of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to
the discipline prescribed by Congress;

17. To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over
such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of
particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of
the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over
all places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in
which the Same shall be, for the Erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals,
dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings; - And

18. To, make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying
into Execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by
this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any
Department or Officer thereof.

SECTION. 9. 1. The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any
of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be
prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred
and eight, but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not
exceeding ten dollars for each person.

2. The Privilege of the Writ of Habeas Corpus shall not be suspended,
unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may
require it.

3. No Bill of Attainder or expost facto Law shall be passed.

4. No Capitation, or other direct, tax shall be laid, unless in
Proportion to the Census or Enumeration herein before directed to be

5. No Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from any State.

6. No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue
to the Ports of one State over those of another: nor shall Vessels bound
to, or from, one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in

7. No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of
Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the
Receipts and Expenditures of all public Money shall be published from
time to time.

8. No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no
Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without
the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office,
or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State.

SECTION. 10. 1. No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or
Confederation; grant Letters of Marque or Reprisal; coin Money; emit
Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in
Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex post facto Law, or Law
impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility.

2. No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts
or Duties on imports or Exports, except what may be absolutely necessary
for executing its inspection Laws: and the net Produce of all Duties and
Imposts, laid by any State on Imports or Exports, shall be for the Use
of the Treasury of the United States; and all such Laws shall be subject
to the Revision and Controul of the Congress.

3. No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any Duty of
Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any
Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or
engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as
will not admit of delay.


SECTION. 1. 1. The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the
United States of America. He shall hold his Office during the Term of
four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same
Term, be elected, as follows

2. Each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof
may direct, a Number of Electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators
and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress:
but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust
or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an Elector.

3. The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the Electors, and the
Day on which they shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same
throughout the United States.

4. No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United
States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be
eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be
eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty
five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States.

5. In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death,
Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said
Office, the same shall devolve on the Vice President, and the Congress
may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation, or
Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what
Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act
accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be

6. The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a
Compensation, which shall neither be encreased nor diminished during the
Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive
within that Period any other Emolument from the United States, or any of

7. Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the
following Oath or Affirmation: - "I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that
I will faithfully execute the Office of the President of the United
States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend
the Constitution of the United States."

SECTION. 2. 1. The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army
and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States,
when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may
require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the
executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their
respective Offices, and he shall have Power to grant Reprieves and
Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of

2. He shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the
Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present
concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent
of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and
Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the
United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for,
and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest
the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the
President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the Heads of Departments.

3. The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may

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Online LibraryMax FarrandThe Fathers of the Constitution; a chronicle of the establishment of the Union → online text (page 11 of 13)