*****A Note on President's Day*****
The Articles of Confederation was the first governing document of the United States of America.
The articles, which combined the 13 colonies of the American Revolutionary War into a loose confederation, were adopted by the Second Continental Congress on November 15, 1777, after 16 months of debate. The articles were ratified three years later on March 1, 1781.
The articles were eventually replaced by the United States Constitution on June 21, 1788, when the ninth state, New Hampshire, ratified the Constitution. According to their own terms for modification, however, the articles were still in effect until 1790, when every one of the 13 states had ratified the new Constitution.
The President of the Continental Congress, which was a position similar to a Prime Minister, was the highest authority; under the Articles of Confederation, the position adopted the title President of the United States in Congress Assembled, and Samuel Huntington was the first presiding officer (September 28, 1779 to July 6, 1781)
Thomas McKean was the 2nd. (July 10, 1781 to November 5, 1781)
John Hanson's term as President of Congress of the United States, during this critical formation period, did have longstanding influence. John Hanson was the first President of the United States to serve the full one-year term (1781–82), under the ratified Articles of Confederation. He was the first to use that title when dealing with foreign governments, diplomats, or treaties. Congress had little authority beyond those powers, which had been specifically delegated to it by the states, and its weakness during this period led directly to a decline in influence and the 1787 Constitution, with a more robust federal model.
Among the accomplishments of Hanson's presidency of Congress:
The origin of the claim that Hanson is the "forgotten" first President stem from a 1932 book by Seymour Wemyss Smith titled John Hanson - Our First President. Nevertheless, officially John Hanson was the third presiding officer of the Congress of the United States, and he considered himself a successor to the first two men to hold the office, Samuel Huntington and Thomas McKean. He was the first to serve a full one-year term, and the first to formally use the title President of the United States in Congress Assembled.
The following men served as President of the United States in Congress Assembled:
The United States Constitution is the supreme law of the United States of America.
It was completed on September 17, 1787, with its adoption by the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and was later ratified by special conventions in each state. It created a federal union of sovereign states, and a federal government to operate that union. It replaced the less defined union that had existed under the Articles of Confederation. It took effect in 1789 and has served as a model for the constitutions of numerous other nations. The Constitution of the United States of America is the oldest written national constitution in use.
The Preamble reads:
The Preamble neither grants any powers nor inhibits any actions; it only explains the rationale behind the Constitution. The Preamble, especially the first three words ("We the people"), is one of the most quoted and referenced sections of the Constitution.
Presidents of the United
States of America under the New Constitution
The President biographies presented here are from the book The Presidents of the United States of America written by Frank Freidel and Hugh S. Sidey (contributing author), published by the White House Historical Association with the cooperation of the National Geographic Society.
"Government run by organized money Is as Dangerous as
Government run by organized mobs"
"If a Nation expects to be ignorant and free in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be... if we are to guard against ignorance and remain free, it is the responsibility of every American to be informed." -- Thomas Jefferson
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