Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
United States Constitution
Click on the title to go the the full text article.
Bill of Rights
The Bill of Rights, ten amendments designed to limit the power of the national government, was added to the U.S. Constitution in 1791. The amendments concern four subjects.
Bill of Rights
The roots of the Bill of Rights—the first ten amendments to the U.S. Constitution—lie deep in Anglo-American history. In 1215 England’s King John, under pressure from rebellious barons, put his seal to Magna Carta, which protected subjects against royal abuses of power.
Constitution - American History
The document that emerged from the Philadelphia Convention of 1787 has become the longest-lived national constitution in the world, fulfilling Chief Justice John Marshall’s vision that it was “meant to endure for ages to come, and to meet the various crises of human affairs” (McCulloch v. Maryland, 1819).
Constitution - American Studies
Under the Articles of Confederation, which were drafted in 1776, approved by Congress in 1777, and finally fully ratified in 1781, the U.S. national government was weak and inefficient, while relations between the states proved chaotic and often hostile. There was no real executive power provided, and a judicial branch was entirely absent.
Constitution of the United States
Document embodying the fundamental principles upon which the American republic is conducted. Drawn up at the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787,
Text of the Constitution of the United States
We, the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquillity, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
United States Bill of Rights
Bill of Rights was put forward during the period of ratification (final approval) of the Constitution. Twelve amendments were proposed by Congress in 1789; the ten now called the Bill of Rights were ratified in 1791.
Bill of Rights Website
Established in 1999, the Institute is a 501(c)(3) not for profit charity focused on providing educational resources on America’s Founding documents and principles for teachers and students of American History and Civics.
Charters of Freedom
National Archives America's Founding Documents
Declaration of Independence - History Channel
When armed conflict between bands of American colonists and British soldiers began in April 1775, the Americans were ostensibly fighting only for their rights as subjects of the British crown. By the following summer, with the Revolutionary War in full swing, the movement for independence from Britain had grown, and delegates of the Continental Congress were faced with a vote on the issue.
U.S. Constitution - History Channel
The U.S. Constitution established America's national government and fundamental laws, and guaranteed certain basic rights for its citizens. It was signed on September 17, 1787, by delegates to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia, presided over by George Washington.