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What happened in 1791?

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Quick Answer

The most significant historical event in 1791 was the ratification of the Bill of Rights, which is the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution. In addition, Vermont became the 14th state to be admitted to the Union, and the first boundary stones were laid to mark off what would become the District of Columbia.

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The Bill of Rights to the U.S. Constitution was ratified by Virginia on December 15, 1791, making it officially the law. The amendments were created to ensure basic rights to all citizens of the United States, and to protect freedoms of religion, assembly, press and speech. The Bill of Rights also gives citizens the right to bear arms and to have fair legal proceedings. Virginia was the 10th of 14 states to approve the Bill of Rights. With this ratification by Virginia, the bill had enough power to become legal, since it required a two-thirds majority for legalization.

Interestingly, there were 12 amendments originally in the bill, but two of them were not ratified. The two amendments that did not make it into the Bill of Rights include an amendment that created a population system for representation and one that prohibited payment to congressional members until an election. The second of these was ultimately ratified two centuries later in 1992.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What are some facts about the Bill of Rights?

    A:

    The Bill of Rights contained 12 amendment proposals when it was sent to the state legislatures, 10 of which were adopted and became the first 10 amendments of the Constitution. Congress had 14 copies made, one for the federal government and 13 to be distributed among the original 13 states.

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  • Q:

    What are the first ten amendments?

    A:

    The first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution are known as the Bill of Rights and were passed by Congress on Sept. 25, 1789 and ratified on Dec. 15, 1791. As of 2014, there are 27 amendments to the Constitution.

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    What are the Ten Amendments?

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    What are the first 10 amendments to the Constitution called?

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    The first 10 amendments to the Constitution of the United States of America constitute the Bill of Rights. These 10 amendments were designed and ratified to prevent the federal government from becoming tyrannical and overly powerful. The inclusion of the Bill of Rights essentially guaranteed passage of the hotly-contested Constitution in 1789.

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