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Jensen, Merrill (ed.) / Ratification of the Constitution by the states: Delaware, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut

C. The impact on Connecticut politics,   pp. 594-601

Page 594

594                            CONNECTICUT/24 JAN.
C. The Impact on Connecticut Politics
Jeremiah Wadsworth to Henry Knox
New Haven, January (excerpt)'
.. there is no vigor in our law at present; and the Antifederalists in
our House of Assembly are gaining ground, hold up their heads, and,
since the news of Friday last that the New York Assembly are openly
and decidedly Antifederal, they are more open.2 Indeed, my friend,
we are in jeopardy after all. I have not yet signified my acceptance or
refusal (but must do it in all this month) of a seat in the new Congress.
My intention has been to refuse for reasons which you know, but my
real friends oppose it. The Antis here wish and urge it-a substantial
reason for my not doing it. My Antifederal relation [James Wads-
worth] has acquired much influence in our lower house and is op-
posed to everything of national concern.
If New York should, after all, not come in, the new Constitution
will be in danger. I write this by candlelight to be soon enough for
the post and have not time to add more.
1. RC, Knox Papers, MHi. The date of the letter is uncertain. Wadsworth often
dated his letters below his signature, but the signature has been clipped from this
letter. "Jany 20 Jan 1788" is written at the top of the letter in a hand other than
Wadsworth's. The 20th was a Sunday and Wadsworth Presented his credentials to
Congress in New York the next day. The letter was therefore presumably written
earlier in the week.
2. Governor Clinton laid the Constitution before the New York Assembly on
Friday, 11 January. For an account of the opposition expected in New York, see
Richard Sill to Wadsworth, 12 January, VIII below.
New Haven Gazette, 24 January'
To the honor of the minority in our state Convention, it ought to
be publicly known that they (unlike the obstinate and unprincipled
minority of Pennsylvania)2 declared generally, they determined to
abide by the just republican principle of submitting to the majority
-that they were treated with the utmost candor and politeness through
the whole discussion- that they considered the Constitution as their
Cons titu tion-and that among their constituents, they should incul-
cate the same sentiments.
1. This item was reprinted in the Fairfield Gazette on 30 January and in twelve
other newspapers from Rhode Island to Maryland by 12 March. For a comment on
it, see "Connecticut," 7 February, VII:C below.
2. See CC: 353.

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