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[THE TEXT OF THIS DOCUMENT WAS TAKEN FROM THE 1994 U.S. CODE ON CD-ROM.]
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    USC - ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION - 1777

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    ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION - 1777

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    ARTICLES OF CONFEDERATION - 1777 (1)

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        To all to whom these Presents shall come, we the undersigned
         Delegates of the States affixed to our Names send greeting
      Whereas the Delegates of the United States of America in Congress
    assembled did on the fifteenth day of November in the Year of our
    Lord One Thousand Seven Hundred and Seventyseven, and in the Second
    Year of the Independence of America agree to certain articles of
    Confederation and perpetual Union between the States of
    Newhampshire, Massachusetts-bay, Rhodeisland and Providence
    Plantations, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania,
    Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolina, South-Carolina and
    Georgia in the Words following, viz.
             (1) Congress Resolved, on the 11th of June, 1776, that a
          committee should be appointed to prepare and digest the form
          of a confederation to be entered into between the Colonies;
          and on the day following, after it had been determined that
          the committee should consist of a member from each Colony,
          the following persons were appointed to perform that duty, to
          wit: Mr. Bartlett, Mr. S. Adams, Mr. Hopkins, Mr. Sherman,
          Mr. R. R. Livingston, Mr. Dickinson, Mr. M'Kean, Mr. Stone,
          Mr. Nelson, Mr. Hewes, Mr. E. Rutledge, and Mr. Gwinnett.
          Upon the report of this committee, the subject was, from time
          to time, debated, until the 15th of November, 1777, when a
          copy of the confederation being made out, and sundry
          amendments made in the diction, without altering the sense,
          the same was finally agreed to.  Congress, at the same time,
          directed that the articles should be proposed to the
          legislatures of all the United States, to be considered, and
          if approved of by them, they were advised to authorize their
          delegates to ratify the same in the Congress of the United
          States; which being done, the same should become conclusive.
          Three hundred copies of the Articles of Confederation were
          ordered to be printed for the use of Congress; and on the
          17th of November, the form of a circular letter to accompany
          them was brought in by a committee appointed to prepare it,
          and being agreed to, thirteen copies of it were ordered to be
          made out, to be signed by the president and forwarded to the
          several States, with copies of the confederation.  On the
          29th of November ensuing, a committee of three was appointed,
          to procure a translation of the articles to be made into the
          French language, and to report an address to the inhabitants
          of Canada, &c. On the 26th of June, 1778, the form of a
          ratification of the Articles of Confederation was adopted,
          and, it having been engrossed on parchment, it was signed on
          the 9th of July on the part and in behalf of their respective
          States, by the delegates of New Hampshire, Massachusetts Bay,
          Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, Connecticut, New
          York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and South Carolina, agreeably
          to the powers vested in them.  The delegates of North
          Carolina signed on the 21st of July, those of Georgia on the
          24th of July, and those of New Jersey on the 26th of November
          following.  On the 5th of May, 1779, Mr. Dickinson and Mr.
          Van Dyke signed in behalf of the State of Delaware, Mr.
          M'Kean having previously signed in February, at which time he
          produced a power to that effect.  Maryland did not ratify
          until the year 1781. She had instructed her delegates, on the
          15th of December, 1778, not to agree to the confederation
          until matters respecting the western lands should be settled
          on principles of equity and sound policy; but, on the 30th of
          January, 1781, finding that the enemies of the country took
          advantage of the circumstance to disseminate opinions of an
          ultimate dissolution of the Union, the legislature of the
          State passed an act to empower their delegates to subscribe
          and ratify the articles, which was accordingly done by Mr.
          Hanson and Mr. Carroll, on the 1st of March of that year,
          which completed the ratifications of the act; and Congress
          assembled on the 2d of March under the new powers.
            Note. - The proof of this document, as published above, was
          read by Mr. Ferdinand Jefferson, the Keeper of the Rolls of
          the Department of State, at Washington, who compared it with
          the original in his custody.  He says: ''The initial letters
          of many of the words in the original of this instrument are
          capitals, but as no system appears to have been observed, the
          same words sometimes beginning with a capital and sometimes
          with a small letter, I have thought it best not to undertake
          to follow the original in this particular.  Moreover, there
          are three forms of the letter s: the capital S, the small s
          and the long s, the last being used indiscriminately to words
          that should begin with a capital and those that should begin
          with a small s.''
     ''Articles of Confederation and perpetual Union between the States
       of Newhampshire, Massachusettsbay, Rhodeisland and Providence
       Plantations, Connecticut, New-York, New-Jersey, Pennsylvania,
       Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North-Carolina, South-Carolina and
                       Georgia.
      Article I. The stile of this confederacy shall be ''The United
    States of America.''
      Article II. Each State retains its sovereignty, freedom and
    independence, and every power, jurisdiction and right, which is not
    by this confederation expressly delegated to the United States, in
    Congress assembled.
      Article III. The said States hereby severally enter into a firm
    league of friendship with each other, for their common defence, the
    security of their liberties, and their mutual and general welfare,
    binding themselves to assist each other, against all force offered
    to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of
    religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretence whatever.
      Article IV. The better to secure and perpetuate mutual friendship
    and intercourse among the people of the different States in this
    Union, the free inhabitants of each of these States, paupers,
    vagabonds and fugitives from justice excepted, shall be entitled to
    all privileges and immunities of free citizens in the several
    States; and the people of each State shall have free ingress and
    regress to and from any other State, and shall enjoy therein all
    the privileges of trade and commerce, subject to the same duties,
    impositions and restrictions as the inhabitants thereof
    respectively, provided that such restrictions shall not extend so
    far as to prevent the removal of property imported into any State,
    to any other State of which the owner is an inhabitant; provided
    also that no imposition, duties or restriction shall be laid by any
    State, on the property of the United States, or either of them.
      If any person guilty of, or charged with treason, felony, or
    other high misdemeanor in any State, shall flee from justice, and
    be found in any of the United States, he shall upon demand of the
    Governor or Executive power, of the State from which he fled, be
    delivered up and removed to the State having jurisdiction of his
    offence.
      Full faith and credit shall be given in each of these States to
    the records, acts and judicial proceedings of the courts and
    magistrates of every other State.
      Article V. For the more convenient management of the general
    interests of the United States, delegates shall be annually
    appointed in such manner as the legislature of each State shall
    direct, to meet in Congress on the first Monday in November, in
    every year, with a power reserved to each State, to recall its
    delegates, or any of them, at any time within the year, and to send
    others in their stead, for the remainder of the year.
      No State shall be represented in Congress by less than two, nor
    by more than seven members; and no person shall be capable of being
    a delegate for more than three years in any term of six years; nor
    shall any person, being a delegate, be capable of holding any
    office under the United States, for which he, or another for his
    benefit receives any salary, fees or emolument of any kind.
      Each State shall maintain its own delegates in a meeting of the
    States, and while they act as members of the committee of the
    States.
      In determining questions in the United States, in Congress
    assembled, each State shall have one vote.
      Freedom of speech and debate in Congress shall not be impeached
    or questioned in any court, or place out of Congress, and the
    members of Congress shall be protected in their persons from
    arrests and imprisonments, during the time of their going to and
    from, and attendance on Congress, except for treason, felony, or
    breach of the peace.
      Article VI. No State without the consent of the United States in
    Congress assembled, shall send any embassy to, or receive any
    embassy from, or enter into any conference, agreement, alliance or
    treaty with any king, prince or state; nor shall any person holding
    any office of profit or trust under the United States, or any of
    them, accept of any present, emolument, office or title of any kind
    whatever from any king, prince or foreign state; nor shall the
    United States in Congress assembled, or any of them, grant any
    title of nobility.
      No two or more States shall enter into any treaty, confederation
    or alliance whatever between them, without the consent of the
    United States in Congress assembled, specifying accurately the
    purposes for which the same is to be entered into, and how long it
    shall continue.
      No State shall lay any imposts or duties, which may interfere
    with any stipulations in treaties, entered into by the United
    States in Congress assembled, with any king, prince or state, in
    pursuance of any treaties already proposed by Congress, to the
    courts of France and Spain.
      No vessels of war shall be kept up in time of peace by any State,
    except such number only, as shall be deemed necessary by the United
    States in Congress assembled, for the defence of such State, or its
    trade; nor shall any body of forces be kept up by any State, in
    time of peace, except such number only, as in the judgment of the
    United States, in Congress assembled, shall be deemed requisite to
    garrison the forts necessary for the defence of such State; but
    every State shall always keep up a well regulated and disciplined
    militia, sufficiently armed and accoutered, and shall provide and
    constantly have ready for use, in public stores, a due number of
    field pieces and tents, and a proper quantity of arms, ammunition
    and camp equipage.
      No State shall engage in any war without the consent of the
    United States in Congress assembled, unless such State be actually
    invaded by enemies, or shall have received certain advice of a
    resolution being formed by some nation of Indians to invade such
    State, and the danger is so imminent as not to admit of a delay,
    till the United States in Congress assembled can be consulted: nor
    shall any State grant commissions to any ships or vessels of war,
    nor letters of marque or reprisal, except it be after a declaration
    of war by the United States in Congress assembled, and then only
    against the kingdom or state and the subjects thereof, against
    which war has been so declared, and under such regulations as shall
    be established by the United States in Congress assembled, unless
    such State be infested by pirates, in which case vessels of war may
    be fitted out for that occasion, and kept so long as the danger
    shall continue or until the United States in Congress assembled
    shall determine otherwise.
      Article VII. When land-forces are raised by any State for the
    common defence, all officers of or under the rank of colonel, shall
    be appointed by the Legislature of each State respectively by whom
    such forces shall be raised, or in such manner as such State shall
    direct, and all vacancies shall be filled up by the State which
    first made the appointment.
      Article VIII. All charges of war, and all other expenses that
    shall be incurred for the common defence or general welfare, and
    allowed by the United States in Congress assembled, shall be
    defrayed out of a common treasury, which shall be supplied by the
    several States, in proportion to the value of all land within each
    State, granted to or surveyed for any person, as such land and the
    buildings and improvements thereon shall be estimated according to
    such mode as the United States in Congress assembled, shall from
    time to time direct and appoint.
      The taxes for paying that proportion shall be laid and levied by
    the authority and direction of the Legislatures of the several
    States within the time agreed upon by the United States in Congress
    assembled.
      Article IX. The United States in Congress assembled, shall have
    the sole and exclusive right and power of determining on peace and
    war, except in the cases mentioned in the sixth article - of
    sending and receiving ambassadors - entering into treaties and
    alliances, provided that no treaty of commerce shall be made
    whereby the legislative power of the respective States shall be
    restrained from imposing such imposts and duties on foreigners, as
    their own people are subjected to, or from prohibiting the
    exportation or importation of any species of goods or commodities
    whatsoever - of establishing rules for deciding in all cases, what
    captures on land or water shall be legal, and in what manner prizes
    taken by land or naval forces in the service of the United States
    shall be divided or appropriated - of granting letters of marque
    and reprisal in times of peace - appointing courts for the trial of
    piracies and felonies committed on the high seas and establishing
    courts for receiving and determining finally appeals in all cases
    of captures, provided that no member of Congress shall be appointed
    a judge of any of the said courts.
      The United States in Congress assembled shall also be the last
    resort on appeal in all disputes and differences now subsisting or
    that hereafter may arise between two or more States concerning
    boundary, jurisdiction or any other cause whatever; which authority
    shall always be exercised in the manner following.  Whenever the
    legislative or executive authority or lawful agent of any State in
    controversy with another shall present a petition to Congress,
    stating the matter in question and praying for a hearing, notice
    thereof shall be given by order of Congress to the legislative or
    executive authority of the other State in controversy, and a day
    assigned for the appearance of the parties by their lawful agents,
    who shall then be directed to appoint by joint consent,
    commissioners or judges to constitute a court for hearing and
    determining the matter in question: but if they cannot agree,
    Congress shall name three persons out of each of the United States,
    and from the list of such persons each party shall alternately
    strike out one, the petitioners beginning, until the number shall
    be reduced to thirteen; and from that number not less than seven,
    nor more than nine names as Congress shall direct, shall in the
    presence of Congress be drawn out by lot, and the persons whose
    names shall be so drawn or any five of them, shall be commissioners
    or judges, to hear and finally determine the controversy, so always
    as a major part of the judges who shall hear the cause shall agree
    in the determination: and if either party shall neglect to attend
    at the day appointed, without showing reasons, which Congress shall
    judge sufficient, or being present shall refuse to strike, the
    Congress shall proceed to nominate three persons out of each State,
    and the Secretary of Congress shall strike in behalf of such party
    absent or refusing; and the judgment and sentence of the court to
    be appointed, in the manner before prescribed, shall be final and
    conclusive; and if any of the parties shall refuse to submit to the
    authority of such court, or to appear or defend their claim or
    cause, the court shall nevertheless proceed to pronounce sentence,
    or judgment, which shall in like manner be final and decisive, the
    judgment or sentence and other proceedings being in either case
    transmitted to Congress, and lodged among the acts of Congress for
    the security of the parties concerned: provided that every
    commissioner, before he sits in judgment, shall take an oath to be
    administered by one of the judges of the supreme or superior court
    of the State where the cause shall be tried, ''well and truly to
    hear and determine the matter in question, according to the best of
    his judgment, without favour, affection or hope of reward:''
    provided also that no State shall be deprived of territory for the
    benefit of the United States.
      All controversies concerning the private right of soil claimed
    under different grants of two or more States, whose jurisdiction as
    they may respect such lands, and the States which passed such
    grants are adjusted, the said grants or either of them being at the
    same time claimed to have originated antecedent to such settlement
    of jurisdiction, shall on the petition of either party to the
    Congress of the United States, be finally determined as near as may
    be in the same manner as is before prescribed for deciding disputes
    respecting territorial jurisdiction between different States.
      The United States in Congress assembled shall also have the sole
    and exclusive right and power of regulating the alloy and value of
    coin struck by their own authority, or by that of the respective
    States. - fixing the standard of weights and measures throughout
    the United States. - regulating the trade and managing all affairs
    with the Indians, not members of any of the States, provided that
    the legislative right of any State within its own limits be not
    infringed or violated - establishing and regulating post-offices
    from one State to another, throughout all the United States, and
    exacting such postage on the papers passing thro' the same as may
    be requisite to defray the expenses of the said office - appointing
    all officers of the land forces, in the service of the United
    States, excepting regimental officers - appointing all the officers
    of the naval forces, and commissioning all officers whatever in the
    service of the United States - making rules for the government and
    regulation of the said land and naval forces, and directing their
    operations.
      The United States in Congress assembled shall have authority to
    appoint a committee, to sit in the recess of Congress, to be
    denominated ''a Committee of the States'', and to consist of one
    delegate from each State; and to appoint such other committees and
    civil officers as may be necessary for managing the general affairs
    of the United States under their direction - to appoint one of
    their number to preside, provided that no person be allowed to
    serve in the office of president more than one year in any term of
    three years; to ascertain the necessary sums of money to be raised
    for the service of the United States, and to appropriate and apply
    the same for defraying the public expenses - to borrow money, or
    emit bills on the credit of the United States, transmitting every
    half year to the respective States an account of the sums of money
    so borrowed or emitted, - to build and equip a navy - to agree upon
    the number of land forces, and to make requisitions from each State
    for its quota, in proportion to the number of white inhabitants in
    such State; which requisition shall be binding, and thereupon the
    Legislature of each State shall appoint the regimental officers,
    raise the men and cloath, arm and equip them in a soldier like
    manner, at the expense of the United States; and the officers and
    men so cloathed, armed and equipped shall march to the place
    appointed, and within the time agreed on by the United States in
    Congress assembled: but if the United States in Congress assembled
    shall, on consideration of circumstances judge proper that any
    State should not raise men, or should raise a smaller number than
    its quota, and that any other State should raise a greater number
    of men than the quota thereof, such extra number shall be raised,
    officered, cloathed, armed and equipped in the same manner as the
    quota of such State, unless the legislature of such State shall
    judge that such extra number cannot be safely spared out of the
    same, in which case they shall raise, officer, cloath, arm and
    equip as many of such extra number as they judge can be safely
    spared.  And the officers and men so cloathed, armed and equipped,
    shall march to the place appointed, and within the time agreed on
    by the United States in Congress assembled.
      The United States in Congress assembled shall never engage in a
    war, nor grant letters of marque and reprisal in time of peace, nor
    enter into any treaties or alliances, nor coin money, nor regulate
    the value thereof, nor ascertain the sums and expenses necessary
    for the defence and welfare of the United States, or any of them,
    nor emit bills, nor borrow money on the credit of the United
    States, nor appropriate money, nor agree upon the number of vessels
    of war, to be built or purchased, or the number of land or sea
    forces to be raised, nor appoint a commander in chief of the army
    or navy, unless nine States assent to the same; nor shall a
    question on any other point, except for adjourning from day to day
    be determined, unless by the votes of a majority of the United
    States in Congress assembled.
      The Congress of the United States shall have power to adjourn to
    any time within the year, and to any place within the United
    States, so that no period of adjournment be for a longer duration
    than the space of six months, and shall publish the journal of
    their proceedings monthly, except such parts thereof relating to
    treaties, alliances or military operations, as in their judgment
    require secresy; and the yeas and nays of the delegates of each
    State on any question shall be entered on the journal, when it is
    desired by any delegate; and the delegates of a State, or any of
    them, at his or their request shall be furnished with a transcript
    of the said journal, except such parts as are above excepted, to
    lay before the Legislatures of the several States.
      Article X. The committee of the States, or any nine of them,
    shall be authorized to execute, in the recess of Congress, such of
    the powers of Congress as the United States in Congress assembled,
    by the consent of nine States, shall from time to time think
    expedient to vest them with; provided that no power be delegated to
    the said committee, for the exercise of which, by the articles of
    confederation, the voice of nine States in the Congress of the
    United States assembled is requisite.
      Article XI. Canada acceding to this confederation, and joining in
    the measures of the United States, shall be admitted into, and
    entitled to all the advantages of this Union: but no other colony
    shall be admitted into the same, unless such admission be agreed to
    by nine States.
      Article XII. All bills of credit emitted, monies borrowed and
    debts contracted by, or under the authority of Congress, before the
    assembling of the United States, in pursuance of the present
    confederation, shall be deemed and considered as a charge against
    the United States, for payment and satisfaction whereof the said
    United States, and the public faith are hereby solemnly pledged.
      Article XIII. Every State shall abide by the determinations of
    the United States in Congress assembled, on all questions which by
    this confederation are submitted to them.  And the articles of this
    confederation shall be inviolably observed by every State, and the
    Union shall be perpetual; nor shall any alteration at any time
    hereafter be made in any of them; unless such alteration be agreed
    to in a Congress of the United States, and be afterwards confirmed
    by the Legislatures of every State.
      And whereas it has pleased the Great Governor of the world to
    incline the hearts of the Legislatures we respectively represent in
    Congress, to approve of, and to authorize us to ratify the said
    articles of confederation and perpetual union.  Know ye that we the
    undersigned delegates, by virtue of the power and authority to us
    given for that purpose, do by these presents, in the name and in
    behalf of our respective constituents, fully and entirely ratify
    and confirm each and every of the said articles of confederation
    and perpetual union, and all and singular the matters and things
    therein contained: and we do further solemnly plight and engage the
    faith of our respective constituents, that they shall abide by the
    determinations of the United States in Congress assembled, on all
    questions, which by the said confederation are submitted to them.
    And that the articles thereof shall be inviolably observed by the
    States we re(s)pectively represent, and that the Union shall be
    perpetual.
    In witness whereof we have hereunto set our hands in Congress. Done
      at Philadelphia in the State of Pennsylvania the ninth day of
      July in the year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and
      seventy-eight, and in the third year of the independence of
      America. (2)
             (2) From the circumstances of delegates from the same
          State having signed the Articles of Confederation at
          different times, as appears by the dates, it is probable they
          affixed their names as they happened to be present in
          Congress, after they had been authorized by their
          constituents.
             ON THE PART & BEHALF OF THE STATE OF NEW HAMPSHIRE
    Josiah Bartlett,                  John Wentworth, Junr.,
                                      August 8th, 1778.
          ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF MASSACHUSETTS BAY
    John Hancock,                     Francis Dana,
    Samuel Adams,                     James Lovell,
    Elbridge Gerry,                   Samuel Holten.
     ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF RHODE ISLAND AND PROVIDENCE
                                PLANTATIONS
    William Ellery,                   John Collins.
    Henry Marchant,
             ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF CONNECTICUT
    Roger Sherman,                    Titus Hosmer,
    Samuel                            Andrew Adams.
     Huntington,
    Oliver Wolcott,
              ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
    Jas. Duane,                       Wm. Duer,
    Fra. Lewis,                       Gouv. Morris.
      ON THE PART AND IN BEHALF OF THE STATE OF NEW JERSEY, NOVR. 26,
                                    1778
    Jno. Witherspoon.                 Nathl. Scudder.
            ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF PENNSYLVANIA
    Robt. Morris,                     William Clingan,
    Daniel Roberdeau,                 Joseph Reed, 22d
    Jona. Bayard                      July, 1778.
     Smith,
               ON THE PART & BEHALF OF THE STATE OF DELAWARE
    Tho. M'Kean, Feby.                Nicholas Van Dyke.
     12, 1779.
    John Dickinson, May 5th, 1779.
              ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF MARYLAND
    John Hanson,                      Daniel Carroll,
     March 1, 1781.                   Mar. 1, 1781.
              ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF VIRGINIA
    Richard Henry Lee,                Jno. Harvie,
    John Banister,                    Francis Lightfoot
    Thomas Adams,                     Lee.
            ON THE PART AND BEHALF OF THE STATE OF NO. CAROLINA
    John Penn,                        Corns. Harnett,
     July 21st, 1778.                 Jno. Williams.
            ON THE PART & BEHALF OF THE STATE OF SOUTH CAROLINA
    Henry Laurens,                    Richd. Hutson,
    William Henry                     Thos. Heyward, Junr.
     Drayton,
    Jno. Mathews,
                ON THE PART & BEHALF OF THE STATE OF GEORGIA
    Jno. Walton, 24th                 Edwd. Telfair,
     July, 1778.                      Edwd. Langworthy.

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