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Kaminski, John P.; Saladino, Gaspare J.; Moore, Timothy D. (Historian); Lannér-Cusin, Johanna E.; Schoenleber, Charles H.; Reid, Jonathan M.; Flamingo, Margaret R.; Fields, David P. (ed.) / Ratification of the Constitution by the states: Maryland (1)
(2015)

I. The debate over the Constitution in Maryland, 17 September-30 November 1787,   pp. 3-67


Page 61

COMMENTARIES, 21 NOVEMBER 1787
as a proselyte to the new Constitution, and proclaimed a holiday in
Baltimore, for the conversion of so capital a sinner.
Baltimore, November 17, 1787.
1. This item is a response to "An Instructor," Baltimore Maryland Gazette, 16 November
(above).
2. See the Baltimore Maryland Gazette, 6 November (RCS:Md., 45-46).
3. See "Caution," Maryland Journal, 12 October (above). "Caution" did not italicize
the phrase italicized by "An Old Man," but he did italicize the words "at this time."
Samuel Chase may have written "Caution."
4. William Shakespeare, The Tempest, Act III, scene II, lines 106-9.
5. See "Samuel Chase: On Calling a State Convention," 28-30 September, footnote 2
(RCS:Md., 13n).
Philadelphia Freeman's Journal, 21 November 17871
Extract of a letter from Queen Anne's county,
(Maryland) November 12.
"You tell me of the beauties of the new constitution, and that great
part of your state are for adopting it,-but this is quite different with
our people; nobody now supposes that it will go down in this state,
without a bill of rights, and very material alterations. You say, that Gen-
eral Washington's name will force it down in all the states-but you
are as much mistaken in that, as I was: I find that our southern states
are clearer on this head than any other, that the greatest names ought
not to prejudice any man in such an important business; but you will
say to this, that the greatest prophet has no honor in his own country.2
I am often told, when I am arguing with them, that the general would
not wish people to adopt it because his name is prefixed to it, and
some have told me that the General, Mr. Franklin, and some others,
did only sign as witnesses, and that they had no hand in forming it; I
have shewn these people Mr. Wilson's speech3 which you sent me, but
I find it does not answer here-pray send me some good, sound, plain,
argumentative pieces, for I am looked very slyly at frequently, and I am
afraid that there must be some cause for it. Please inform me how I
shall get over this sweeping clause, as they call it, viz.-'That the con-
stitution and laws of Congress are to have the power of regulating every
thing in the state, and to be the supreme law of the land, any thing in
the constitutions or laws of any of the states to the contrary notwith-
standing;'4 for in their arguing for a bill of rights they always throw up
this in the way, among other objections. Every body I see from Virginia,
informs me, that all is going against us all over that state, and they tell
me, that there has been a trial of the proposed plan in a court-house
there; when the business of the court was over, the lawyers divided
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