The First’s First 15 Words

In the first 15 words, the writers of the Constitution prevented the government from establishing a national religion AND enabled any resident of the country to practice whatever religion they preferred. This had never been done in modern history.

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The Origin of the U.S. Census

Asymptotic population growth during and after the American Revolution led the U.S. Constitutional Convention to include the clause requiring a census every 10 years.

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End of Close Friendships

The Jay Treaty resolved some of the remaining differnences between the new U.S. and the British. Ratification led to a divisive bitter fight between Jefferson and Washington that had nothing to do with the terms of the treaty. It was all about political power.

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Whiskey Tax Leads to Rebellion

Whiskey in the late 18th Century was not only a drink, but a commodity. Outside the towns along the Atlantic Coast, farmers turned surplus corn, wheat, barley, and rye into…

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Problems of Remaining Neutral in 1798

The French Revolution which began in 1789 presented a series of difficult foreign policy challenges for the United States. One of the clauses in the Franco-American 1778 Treaty of Friendship…

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Signing Day

We are all taught that on July 4th, 1776, the Declaration of Independence, was signed and promulgated. Well, not exactly. By the time the Declaration of Independence was approved by…

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