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Constitution Day

Constitution Day is held on September 17 in honor and remembrance of the signing of the U.S. Constitution. It recognizes the millions of Americans who strive to uphold the duties and responsibilities of citizenship.

During the Philadelphia Convention of 1787, 42 of the 55 delegates who had been in attendance almost daily since May amending and reamending the constitution decided they would write an entirely new document.

The new Constitution was meant to clearly define and separate the powers of the central government, the powers of the states, the rights of the people and how the representatives of the people should be elected.

On September 17, 1787, the entirely rewritten United States Constitution was sent to the Articles Congress. After being signed by the attending delegates, it was sent to each state for ratification.

Certain states agreed to ratify the Constitution with exceptions. They wanted the amendments that were to become the Bill of Rights to be taken up immediately by the new government. They wanted the amendments to be taken up in the very first session of the First Congress.

After being ratified by 11 states, representatives met in New York City in 1789 and replaced the Articles of Confederation that had been drafted in 1781 with the newly written Constitution of the United States.

After elections were held, the newly formed Federal Government began on March 4, 1789, and the Articles Congress dissolved itself.

Following its establishment, the original Constitution has been amended twenty-seven times. The meaning of the Constitution is interpreted and extended by judicial review in the federal courts.

Amendments to the Constitution address individual liberties and freedoms and other conerns that affect the rights of citizens and the way they are governed and treated, the amount of power and control the federal government has over individual states, spending, civil rights, wars, the environment, and any other issues that may arise.

Constitution Day celebrates the freedoms and privileges that both native born Americans and those who are naturalized citizens have been granted.


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