New Hampshire, June 21, 1788

Constitution (Elliot’s Debates)

Vol. I

Seven states ratifying the Constitution proposed no amendments. Four of the six states proposing amendments requested provisions dealing with religion. New Hampshire’s proposed amendment is set forth below. Virginia, North Carolina, and New York also proposed amendments.

Lewis Roca Rothgerber Christie Religious Institutions Group

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In Convention of the Delegates of the People of the State of New Hampshire, June the 21st, 1788.

The Convention having impartially discussed and fully considered the Constitution for the United States of America, reported to Congress by the Convention of

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Delegates from the United States of America, and submitted to us by a resolution of the General Court of said state, passed the 14th day of December last past, and acknowledging with grateful hearts the goodness of the Supreme Ruler of the universe in affording the people of the United States, in the course of his providence, an opportunity, deliberately and peaceably, without fraud of surprise, of entering into an explicit and solemn compact with each other, by assenting to and ratifying a new Constitution, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defence, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to themselves and their posterity,–Do, in the name and behalf of the people of the state of New Hampshire, assent to and ratify the said Constitution for the United States of America. And as it is the opinion of this Convention, that certain amendments and alterations in the said Constitution would remove the fears and quiet the apprehensions of many of the good people of this state, and more effectually guard against an undue administration of the federal government,–The Convention do therefore recommend that the following alterations and provisions be introduced in the said Constitution:–

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XI. Congress shall make no laws touching religion, or to infringe the rights of conscience.

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And the Convention do, in the name and in behalf of the people of this state, enjoin it upon their representatives in Congress, at all times until the alterations and provisions aforesaid have been considered agreeably to the fifth article of the said Constitution, to exert all their influence, and use all reasonable and legal methods, to obtain a ratification of the said alterations and provisions, in such manner as is provided in the article.

And that the United States in Congress assembled may have due notice of the assent and ratification of the said Constitution by this Convention, it is Resolved,

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That the assent and ratification aforesaid be engrossed on parchment, together with the recommendation and injunction aforesaid, and with this resolution; and that John Sullivan, Esq., president of the Convention, and John Langdon, Esq., president of the state, transmit the same, countersigned by the secretary of Convention, and the secretary of state, under their hands and seals, to the United States in Congress assembled.

JOHN SULLIVAN, Pres. of the Conv. [L. S.]

JOHN LANGDON, Pres. of the State. [L. S.]

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