University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
Link to University of Wisconsin Digital Collections
The History Collection

Page View

Jensen, Merrill (ed.) / Ratification of the Constitution by the states: Delaware, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut
3 (1978)

VI. The Connecticut Convention, 3-9 January 1788,   pp. 535-562

Page 540

The Connecticut Convention
3 January 1788
Convention Proceedings'
The Honorable Convention for this state met this day at the State
House in the city of Hartford; and appointed His Excellency Matthew
Griswold, Esquire, late governor of this state, President, and Jedediah
Strong, Esquire, secretary.2 After examining the certificates of the
members, they adjourned to the North Meeting House, which had
been previously fitted up with stoves for the purpose of accommodat-
ing the Convention.  After some debate upon the most eligible
method of entering upon the important subject on which they were
convened, and of effecting a full discussion and thorough investiga-
tion of it, they resolved that the Constitution proposed by the late
Federal Convention should be read and discussed by sections; but
that no vote should be taken on it till the whole should be fully
discussed. [Connecticut Courant, 7 January]4
The assembly being thus formed and the roll called in the State
House; on motion of Colonel Jesse Root,5 seconded by Colonel
Eliphalet Dyer, etc., the delegates repaired in solemn procession to
the North Meeting House, where, after prayers offered by the Rev-
erend Mr. [Nathan] Strong,6 by order of the President, the proposed
CONSTITUTION was read, together with the several public resolves,
official letters, etc., accompanying the same, in their order. Where-
upon, the Lieutenant Governor [Oliver Wolcott] proposed that in
order to obtain and facilitate a fair, free, full, and advantageous discus-
sion of the important subject, it should be taken up in cursory man-
ner, by single articles, sections, paragraphs, or detached clauses and
sentences as occasion might require; with suitable pauses for any
objections, doubts, or queries to be freely offered for particular ex-
planation, etc., yet so as to preclude no general remarks or observa-
tions which any gentleman might be disposed to make on either side
in the process of such disquisition, or general review, at the close
thereof. And being seconded by General Samuel H. Parsons, Dr. Wil-
liam Samuel Johnson, Judge Richard Law, Mr. Oliver Elsworth,
Colonel John Chester,7 etc., with this addition, viz., "that no other
vote be taken thereon till the one decisive, general question." It was
agreed nem. con. and voted accordingly; and thereupon from day to
day. [Weekly Monitor, 14 January]

Go up to Top of Page