By virtue of size, population, and wealth New York and Virginia held virtual veto power over the ratification process.
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Despite its having the backing of America's brightest statesmen, such as James Madison and Alexander Hamilton, and the Revolutionary hero George Washington, however, the Constitution had its enemies.
George Mason and Virginia governor Edmund Randolph, members of the Virginia delegation to the Convention, had both refused to sign it.
If both were to refuse to ratify, the Union would probably fail.
In Virginia, even the friends of the Constitution estimated its support at no more than 50 percent of the voting population, while in New York the opposition seemed even stronger.But the authors not only discussed the issues of the constitution, but also many general problems of politics.Though Alexander Hamilton is recognized as one of the three authors of the Federalist Papers, the extent of which he was involved in the creation, writing, and publishing of the essays is not as widely-known.Madison happened to be in New York on official business at the time and agreed to assist Hamilton as well, and ultimately ended up authoring nearly 40 percent of the series.What we know as the Federalist Papers, is actually a series of eighty-five essays written by Hamilton, Jay, and Madison between October 1787 and May 1788.At the Virginia ratification convention Mason and Patrick Henry opposed ratification because the proposed new government was potentially too strong.In addition to being large and populous states, Virginia and New York had the nation's biggest and most diversified economies and could conceivably stand alone if necessary.Learn some of the interesting trivia about Alexander Hamilton and the Federalist Papers.Under a provision agreed to by the delegates of the Philadelphia Convention and approved by Congress, the Constitution had to be ratified by nine states in order to go into effect.These papers are generally considered to be one of the most important contributions to political thought made in America.The essays appeared in bookform in 1788, with an introduction by Hamilton.