Kaminski, John P.; Saladino, Gaspare J.; Leffler, Richard; Schoenleber, Charles H. (ed.) / Commentaries on the Constitution, public and private. Volume 6: 10 May to 13 September 1788
cate political maneuvering that developed in the at- tempt to defeat the ratification of the Constitution and, once the Constitution was adopted, to obtain amendments. One series of seventeen letters illus- trates the attempt of New York Antifederalists to coordinate the opposition to the Constitution in states that had not yet ratified the Constitution. Other Antifederalists, such as Nathan Dane, Mercy Warren, Richard Henry Lee, Charles Pettit, El- bridge Gerry, and Samuel Osgood, also wrote per- ceptive and revealing letters. The documents in this volume suggest the political complexities involved in ratifying the Constitution, the sense of awe at what America had accomplished by drafting and adopting a new form of government using reason and accommodation instead of force and intimidation, the rivalry among states over the location of the new federal capital, the continuing demand for amendments, and the importance of George Washington as the inevitable first president under the Constitution. Federalists looked forward to the auspicious beginning of a new nation under its new national constitution, and Antifederalists an- ticipated amendments to the Constitution, especially a bill of rights. THE EDITORS JOHN P. KAMINSKi, GASPARE J. SALADINO, and RICHARD LEFFLER have been editing The Doc- umentary History of the Ratification of the Consti- tution since 1970. CHARLES H. SCHOENLEBER joined the staff in 1987. Dr. Kaminski is also the author of George Clinton: Yeoman Politician of the New Republic (1993); editor of A Necessary Evil? Slavery and the Debate over the Constitution (1995); and co-editor of The Constitution and the States (1988), A Great and Good Man: George Washington in the Eyes of His Contemporaries (1989), and The Bill of Rights and the States (1992). He and Dr. Leffler have co-edited Fed- eralists and Antifederalists: The Debate over the Ratification of the Constitution (1989).
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