Major Events for Early American Government

  • Sep 20, 1215

    Magna Carta

    Magna Carta
    Magna Carta is an English charter, originally issued in the year 1215 and reissued later in the 13th century in modified versions, which included the most direct challenges to the monarch's authority to date. The charter first passed into law in 1225. The 1297 version, with the long title The Great Charter of the Liberties of England, and of the Liberties of the Forest, still remains on the statute books of England and Wales.
  • Petition of Right

    Petition of Right
    The Petition of Right is a document started by the English Parliament in the run up to the English Civil War. It was addressed to Charles I of England in 1628.
  • English Bill of Rights

    English Bill of Rights
    Its main purpose was to declare illegal various practices of James II. It possessed certain civil and political rights that could not be taken away.
  • Albany Plan of Union

    Albany Plan of Union
    The Albany Plan of Union was an early attemp at forming a union of the colonies. It was proposed by Benjamin Franklin.
  • Boston Massacre

    Boston Massacre
    It was a fight between British troops and a crowd in Boston, Massachussets. It contributed to the unpopularity of the British regime in the colonies before the American Revolution.
  • Boston Tea Party

    Boston Tea Party
    It was where American Patriots dressed as indians and threw 342 chests of tea from British ships into the Boston Harbor. They did this to prevent the payment of taxes on tea.
  • First Continental Congress

    First Continental Congress
    It was called in response to the Intolerable Acts. They met to consider options, such as boycotting on British trade
  • Second Continental Congress

    Second Continental Congress
    They managed the war effect, and moved towards independence. They adopted the Declaration of Independence.
  • Declaration of Independence

    Declaration of Independence
    It announced the separation of the 14 North American British colonies and Britain. Jefferson was persuaded to write the draft, which was presented with few changes on June 28.
  • Articles of Confederation

    Articles of Confederation
    It was the first governing document of the United States. It combined the 13 colonies of the American Revolution into a loose confederation.
  • Shay's Rebellion

    Shay's Rebellion
    Daniel Shay marched in on the state supreme court in Springfield, preventing them from carrying out foreclosures and debt collection. He thenled about 1,200 men in an attack on the nearby federal arsenal, but they were repulsed by troops.
  • New Jersey Plan

    New Jersey Plan
    This plan was introduced by William Paterson. The New Jersey Plan led to the establishment of the US Senate. The states were represented equally.
  • Virginia Plan

    Virginia Plan
    It was drafted by James Madison, and presented by Edmund Randolph. The Virginia Plan proposed a strong central government composed of three branches; legislative, executive, and judicial.