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1. The ratification of the conventions of nine states shall be sufficient for the establishment of this constitution between the states so ratifying the same.
DONE IN CONVENTION, by the unanimous consent of the states present, the seventeenth day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty-seven, and of the independence of the United States of America the twelfth. In witness whereof we have hereunto subscribed our names.
[The following amendments were proposed at the first session of the first congress of the United States, which was begun and held
at the city of New York, on the 4th March, 1789, and were adopted by the requisite number of states.-1 vol. Laws of U. S., p. 72.]
[The preamble and resolution following, preceded the original proposition of the amendments, and as they have been supposed by a high equity judge, (8th Wendell's reports, p. 100,) to have an important bearing on the construction of those amendments, they are here inserted. They will be found in the journals of the first session of the first congress.
Congress of the United States, begun and held at the city of New York, on Wednesday, the 4th of March, 1789. The conventions of a number of the states having, at the time of their adopting the constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added; and as extending the ground of public confidence in the government, will best insure the beneficent ends of its institution,
Resolved, By the senate and house of representatives of the United States of America, in congress assembled, two-thirds of both houses concurring that the following articles be proposed to the legislatures of the several states, as amendments to the constitution of the United States, all or any of which articles, when ratified by three-fourths of said legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of said constitution; namely:]
Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof, or abridging the freedom of speech or of the press, or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of griev
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.
No soldier shall, in time of peace, be quartered in any house without the consent of the owner; nor in time of war but in a manner to be prescribed by law.
The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated; and no warrants shall issue but upon probable cause, supported by oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
No person shall be held to answer for a capital or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a grand jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the militia, when in actual service, in time of war or public danger, nor shall any percon be subject for the same offense to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled, in any criminal case, to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life liberty, or property without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation.
In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the state and district wherein the crime shall have been committed, which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor; and to have the assistance of counsel for his defense.
In suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved; and no fact tried by a jury shall be otherwise re-examined in any court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law,
Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted..
The enumeration in the constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people.
powers not delegated to the United States by the constitution, nor prohibited by it to the states, are reserved to the states respectively, or to the people.
[The following amendment was proposed at the second session of the third congress. It is printed in the laws of the United States, 1st vol., p. 73, as article xi.]
The judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States, by citizens of another state, or by citizens or subjects of any foreign state.
[The three following sections were proposed as amendments at the first session of the eighth congress. They are printed in the laws of the United States as article XII.]
1. The electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for president and vice-president, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as president, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as vice-president; and they shall make distinct lists of all persons voted for as president, and of all persons voted for as vice-president, and of the number of votes for each; which list they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the president of the senate; the president of the senate shall, in the presence of the senate and house of representatives, open all the certificates, and the votes shall then be counted; the person having the greatest number of votes for president, shall be the president, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed; and if no person have such a majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers, not exceeding three, on the list of those voted for as president, the house of representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the president. But, in choosing the president, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote: a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. And if the house of representatives shall not choose a president whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the vice-president shall act as president, as in case of the death or other constitutional disability of the president.
2. The person having the greatest number of votes as vice-president, shall be the vice-prsident, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed; and if no person have a majority, then from the two highest numbers on the list, the senate shall choose the vice-president; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice.
3. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of president, shall be eligible to that of vice-president of the United States.
SECTION 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as
a punishment for crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
SEC. 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
MR. SEWARD'S CERTIFICATE OF THE ANTI-SLAVERY AMENDMENT, KNOWN AS THE THIRTEENTH AMENDMENT.
WILLIAM H. SEWARD, SECRETARY OF STATE OF THE UNITED STATES.
To all to whom these presents may come, greeting:
Know ye, that whereas the congress of the United States, on the 1st of February last passed a resolution which is in the words following, namely:
"A resolution submitting to the legislature of the several states a proposition to amend the constitution of the United States
"Resolved by the senate and house of representatives of the United States of America in congress assembled (two-thirds of both houses concurring,) That the following article be proposed to the legislatures of the several states as an amendment to the constitution of the United States, which, when ratified by three-fourths of said legislatures, shall be valid, to all intents and purposes, as a part of the said constitution, namely:
SECTION 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime, whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction.
SEC. 3. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.
And whereas it appears from official documents on file in this department, that the amendment to the constitution of the United States, proposed as aforesaid, has been ratified by the legislatures of the states of Illinois, Rhode Island, Michigan, Maryland, New York, West Virginia, Maine, Kansas, Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Ohio, Missouri, Nevada, Indiana, Louisiana, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Vermont, Tennessee, Arkansas, Connecticut, New Hampshire, South Carolina, Alabama, North Carolina, and Georgiain all, twenty-seven states:
And whereas the whole number of states in the United States is thirty-six, and whereas the before specially-named states, whose legislatures have ratified the said proposed amendment, constitute three-fourths of the whole number of states in the United States: Now, therefore, be it known that I, William H. Seward, secretary of state of the United States, by virtue and in pursuance of the second section of the act of congress approved the twentieth of April, eighteen hundred and eighteen, entitled, "an act to pro