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Jensen, Merrill; Kaminski, John P.; Saladino, Gaspare J. (ed.) / Ratification of the Constitution by the states: Pennsylvania
2 (1976)

A. Public and private commentaries on the Constitution, 17 September-6 October 1787,   pp. 130-172


Page 134

II. DEBATE OVER CONSTITUTION
Philadelphia, Southwark, and Northern Liberties Meeting,
20 September1
At a meeting of a very respectable number of the inhabitants of
the different wards of this city, the district of Southwark and town-
ship of the Northern Liberties, the following petition and declara-
tion was unanimously agreed to be circulated, and when signed, to be
presented to the honorable the representatives of the freemen of the
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in General Assembly met.
TO2 the Honorable the Representatives of the Freemen of the
Commonwealth of Pennsylvania in General Assembly met,
The Petition and Declaration of the Inhabitants of Philadelphia and
of the Districts of Southwark and the Northern Liberties.
Respectfully showeth, That your petitioners have seen, with great
pleasure, the proposed Constitution of the United States, and as they
conceive it to be wisely calculated to form a perfect union of the
states, as well as to secure to themselves and posterity, the blessings
of peace, liberty and safety, they have taken this method of express-
ing their earnest desires, that the said Constitution may be adopted
as speedily as possible, by the State of Pennsylvania, in the manner
recommended by the resolution of the late Honorable Convention.
1. Pennsylvania Packet, 21 September. The Independent Gazetteer also printed
this item on the same day. By 16 October this report of the first known public
meeting to consider the Constitution was reprinted or reported five other times
in Philadelphia, once in Lancaster, and thirty-nine times from Maine to South
Carolina.
The date of the meeting is not given, but it probably occurred on 20 September,
the day before it was reported in the Packet and the Gazetteer, both daily news-
papers.
2. From this point on, the text, with minor variations, is identical with the
printed petitions circulated in the area.
Germantown Meeting, 21 September1
At a meeting of a respectable number of the citizens of German-
town, Dr. Charles Bensel in the chair, the Constitution of the United
States being read,
Resolved unanimously, That we do highly approve of the proposed
Constitution of the United States, and that we will concur with our
fellow citizens in Philadelphia in praying the legislature immediately
to adopt the measures recommended by the late Honorable Conven-
tion, for carrying the same into execution.
1. Pennsylvania Packet, 22 September. Bensel was a Germantown physician.
The Independent Gazetteer and the Evening Chronicle also printed the item on
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