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that there could not be a union without some sacrifice of individual rights for the greater good of all.

It was 1781, the last year of the war, before the Articles of Confederation, which had been proposed by the Continental Congress, were ratified by all of the States. A suggestion by Maryland was the cause of much of the delay. She desired that before she signed the Articles, all States claiming lands beyond the Alleghenies by virtue of their “sea-to-sea' colonial charters should surrender those lands, and that these should form a great public domain under control of the new Federal Government. She suggested that the lands in this domain be sold to settlers for the benefit of the Federal Treasury, which in this way might recover some of the great cost of the Revolution; and she further pointed out that as population increased in the Northwest, new States could be formed there, and thus the Union would grow and strengthen. The States having Western land claims generously adopted Maryland's suggestion, and between 1780 and 1786 all of the trans-Allegheny country north of the Ohio River was ceded to Congress, as she had desired.? This was the first public land owned by our National Government. The cession had two great and lasting results:

(a) No longer could the Eastern States have serious boundary disputes over their Western lands. Virginia and Pennsylvania, in particular, had had much trouble of this sort before the Revolutionary War.

(6) The people of all the States soon became interested in the newly acquired public lands in the West, which were owned equally by every American. From this common ownership there sprang up, almost for the first time, a general feeling of regard for the new nation.

197. The Articles of Confederation prove to be weak. When at last the Articles of Confederation were put into

1 In making her cession (1786), Connecticut reserved a strip one hundred and twenty miles long, on the south shore of Lake Erie. This is still known as the “Western Reserve" of Ohio. A part of it was sold for the benefit of the Connecticut schools, but in 1800 the remainder was turned over to the nation. South of the Ohio River, cessions were not made until later dates than those north of it - South Carolina, 1787; North Carolina, 1790; Georgia, 1802.

operation, it did not take long for our best statesmen to realize that no strong nation could be developed by this plan of union. It proved to be too weak for our needs, and for these reasons:

(a) No matter how large or small each State was, it had but one vote in Congress, so that little Delaware, for example, had just as much voice in deciding questions as the great State of Virginia. The larger States bitterly complained of this.

(b) Congress could pass no laws unless nine of the thirteen States consented to them. There was so much jealousy between them that it was very difficult to get the consent of nine to any measure.

(c) The laws could not be enforced, for there was no President to execute them.

(d) Congress was only an adviser to the States. It had no real authority of its own. It could not even raise taxes for its own needs; it had only such money as might be given to it by the State Legislatures - it could not oblige them to pay if they refused. This fact had led to a great deal of trouble in carrying on the Revolution, and often caused much suffering in the army. Because of it, Washington had often to draw upon his private fortune to pay and clothe the Nation's defenders. Because of it, Congress had no means of paying the great debts of the nation, caused by the war. That body had borrowed large sums of money in France and Holland which it could not pay, and in addition had issued vast quantities of paper money which it could not now redeem in real money. In consequence of this plight of our Federal Government, the national credit sank very low. Having no power of its own, Congress could not defend itself from insult. Once, toward the close of the war, it was forced to hurry from Philadelphia to Princeton, because threatened by a large body of unpaid soldiers who demanded that they at once be given the money due them.

(e) Congress had no power to regulate our trade with

foreign countries, or between the States. Some States sought to make commercial treaties of their own with European nations, and collected duties on imports. Several States even levied duties on imports from each other, a form of commercial warfare that led to many serious disputes between them, and interstate trade was for a time nearly ruined. 1

(f) Congress had no power to settle the disputes that frequently arose between citizens of different States. This resulted in some injustice, especially when a citizen of one State refused to pay debts owed by him to a citizen of another State.

When the new Government was established, Thomas Paine had exultingly said, “The times that try men's souls are over.But he was wrong. In the words of Daniel Webster, the Union under the Articles of Confederation was "merely a rope of sand.”

198. Adoption of the Ordinance of 1787. However, the Congress serving under the Articles rendered one most important service to the nation, by adopting a form of government for the new public domain, which henceforth was to be called the “ Northwest Territory.” This document is known as the “Ordinance of 1787," because it was passed in that year. It is famous in our history, because:

(a) It provided for religious freedom throughout the Territory.

(6) It declared that “the means of education shall forever be encouraged,” and arranged that large tracts of public lands should be sold for the benefit of schools and colleges in the Territory.

1. For instance, New Jersey's country produce was taxed on entering both Philadelphia and New York. In retaliation for the latter, New Jersey placed a tax of $1800 on a New York lighthouse standing on the Jersey shore.

Connecticut admitted cargoes in English vessels duty free, but shipments to that State from Massachusetts must pay duty. Firewood shipped from Connecticut paid a tax in New York.

2 In 1784 Thomas Jefferson had offered in Congress a plan for governing this territory and dividing it into States; but his plan had been rejected. It had, however, many of the features of the Ordinance of 1787.

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(c) It declared that human slavery should never be permitted within the borders of the Territory.

The adoption of the Ordinance strengthened the interest in the West which the people of the whole country were beginning to feel. Revolutionary soldiers and other settlers began at once to pour into the region, which grew rapidly

in population. In later years it was

divided into the MINNESOTA

States indicated on the map. All of these owed their early prosperity to

the successful workOntario

ing of the Ordinance of 1787.

199. Troubles

under the ConfedVINDARA

eration. The his

tory of our Union ohig

under the weak Ar

ticles of ConfederaTacky

tion is called the THE NORTHWEST TERRITORY

critical period,” The shaded portion shows the Territory, also its later division into because during that Illinois, 1818: Michigan, 1837: Wisconsin, 1848. A part of the time the future of Territory is also included in Minnesota, admitted in 1858

the young nation seemed very dark and uncertain. We have read of some of the reasons for this condition. There were also others: —

(a) Our people had ceased to be British subjects, and for that reason the markets controlled by Great Britain were now virtually closed to them. Thus American ocean commerce was at a standstill; and our once thriving industry of shipbuilding was nearly dead.

(6) The country was flooded with paper money; yet the people who owed debts—and the war had made most Americans poor — demanded that additional bills be printed, and

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they be allowed to pay their debts in this “cheap" money. Most of the States unwisely yielded to this popular clamor. Their action threw business into still worse confusion, for merchants and manufacturers refused either to buy or sell if they had to take this worthless paper in exchange for their goods.

Citizens almost lost their confidence in the future of the nation. There was little respect for the laws, crime was widespread, and life and property were insecure. Every thoughtful American now realized that there is something far worse than tyranny, and that is anarchy. They saw that a stronger, more efficient Federal Government must surely be formed, or the new Republic would soon go to pieces.

QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS 1. What were some reasons for the lack of a strong national feeling after

our independence had been won? Why would you have expected the

contrary to be true? 2. The thirteen colonies under the Articles of Confederation did not

understand the meaning of our term “team work.” Show that this was true. What is the underlying principle of team work? Why

necessary in our nation? 3. The historian Fiske says the acquisition of the Northwest Territory

* prepared men's minds for the work of the Federal Convention."

Explain. 4. What makes the Ordinance of 1787 such an important document?

How is its influence felt to-day?

1 In their practice regarding paper money, there were two classes of States: (a) Those, of which Rhode Island was an example, in which the legislature yielded to the popular clamor, and issued paper money, and then passed “ legal tender” laws that sought to compel merchants to receive it. In such States, business was destroyed. (b) Those, of which Massachusetts was an example, in which the legislature refused to issue such money. This refusal also led to much distress, for there was little real money to be had, with which to pay debts and taxes. During the winter of 1786–87, a rebellion of debtors broke out in Massachusetts, led by Daniel Shays (called “Shays's Rebellion”). The rioters prevented the courts from imprisoning debtors as was then the custom, and for seven months created much disturbance by burning property and terrorizing the police; but finally they were quelled.

This rebellion taught: (a) That the Articles of Confederation had brought the country to a condition in which its citizens were led to revolt against a State Government, and Congress was powerless to prevent it. (b) That a new set of laws was a necessity, if the country was to be peaceful and grow strong.

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