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Collection Reference Number GLC00099.047
From Archive Folder Collection of letters, documents & briefs from Edmund Pendleton to the Madisons 
Title Edmund Pendleton to James Madison re: companies in the best, military draft, attacks on Florida
Date 25 September 1780
Author Pendleton, Edmund (1721-1803)  
Recipient Madison, James  
Document Type Correspondence
Content Description Mentions companies engaged in promoting the development of the West, the attack on St. Augustine, Florida, the military draft, and Virginia's claims in Ohio. With penciled quotation in later hand on bottom annotating "Hotspur" in Pendleton's letter (quotation from Shakespeare).
Subjects Military History  President  Conscription  Recruitment  Boundary or Property Dispute  Westward Expansion  Revolutionary War  Literature and Language Arts  Soldier's Pay  Continental Army  France  Navy  Finance  Economics  Articles of Confederation  American Indian History  Land Transaction  Declaration of Independence  
People Pendleton, Edmund (1721-1803)  Madison, James (1751-1836)  
Place written Edmundsbury, Virginia
Theme Westward Expansion; The American Revolution; The Presidency
Sub-collection The Gilder Lehrman Collection, 1493-1859
Additional Information In 1781, the 13 original states ratified the first United States constitution, the Articles of Confederation. The Articles served as the new nation's plan of government until the Constitution of the United States was ratified in 1789. In this letter, Edmund Pendleton urges establishment of a formal compact among the states, and stresses the need for compromise as the only way to obtain union. Under the Articles of Confederation, the national government was composed of a Congress, which had the power to declare war, appoint military officers, sign treaties, make alliances, appoint foreign ambassadors, and manage relations with Indians. All states were represented equally in Congress, and nine of the 13 states had to approve a bill before it became law. Amendments required the approval of all the states. The Articles of Confederation represented an attempt to balance the sovereignty of the states with an effective national government. In order to protect states' rights, the Articles set strict limits on congressional authority. Under the Articles, the states, not Congress had the power to tax. Congress could raise money only by asking the states for funds, borrowing from foreign governments, and selling western lands. In addition, Congress could not draft soldiers or regulate trade. There was no provision for national courts or a chief executive. Equally important, the Articles did not establish a genuinely republican government. Members of the Confederation Congress were selected by state governments, not by the people. Further, power was concentrated in a single assembly, rather than being divided, as in the state governments, into separates houses and branches.
Copyright The Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History
Module Settlement, Commerce, Revolution and Reform: 1493-1859
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