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Massachusetts Citizenship Anthology

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					“Citizenship is a priviledge that offers you the extraordinary opportunity to be a part of the governing process.”

Introduction

Keeping the United States system of representative democracy working, we must all strive to be active participants in American civic life,” as is written in the U.S. Government’s official Citizens Almanac. The Almanac is reprinted with this electronic publication on citizenship.

“You have the right to cast your ballot in a manner that ensures privacy. You have the right to vote without any person trying to influence your vote and to vote in a booth that prevents others from watching you mark your ballot.” Massachusetts Voter’s Bill of Rights

ECM Country citizens as Americans have rights: Freedom of speech Freedom of religion Voting rights Right to a speedy and fair justice Right to run for elected office Freedom to pursue life, liberty and happiness And ECM citizens also have responsibilities: Defend the constitution against enemies foreign and domestic Stay informed of community issues Participate in the democratic process Respect and obey local, state and federal laws Respect the rights, beliefs and opinions of others Participate in your community Pay taxes Serve on juries Defend the country

East Central Massachusetts News and ECMNooz YouTube Video Channel compile ebooks and web links to help make citizen participation in ECM Country as easy as possible.

Learn About the United States
Quick Civics Lessons for the New Naturalization Test

M-638 (rev. 02/09)

Learn About the United States: Quick Civics Lessons for the New Naturalization Test
Thank you for your interest in becoming a citizen of the United States of America. Your decision to apply for U.S. citizenship is a very meaningful demonstration of your commitment to this country and we applaud your efforts. The United States has a long and rich history of welcoming immigrants from all parts of the world. U.S. citizenship is the common thread that connects people from different cultures and backgrounds. For more than 200 years, the United States has remained strong because of our citizens and the common civic values we share. As you prepare for U.S. citizenship, Learn About the United States: Quick Civics Lessons for the New Naturalization Test will help you study for the civics and English portions of the naturalization interview. There are 100 civics (history and government) questions on the naturalization test. During your naturalization interview, you will be asked up to 10 questions from the list of 100 questions. You must answer correctly at least six (6) of the 10 questions to pass the civics test. Applicants who are age 65 or older and have been a lawful permanent resident for at least 20 years at the time of filing Form N-400 are only required to study 20 of the 100 civics test questions for the new naturalization test. These questions are flagged with an asterisk (*) in this booklet. Learn About the United States contains short lessons based on each of the 100 civics (history and government) questions. This additional information will help you learn more about important concepts in American history and government. During your naturalization interview, you will not be tested on the additional information in the short lessons. There are three components to the English portion of the test: speaking, reading, and writing. Your ability to speak English is determined by the USCIS Officer based on your answers to questions normally asked during the eligibility interview on the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400. For the reading test, you must read one (1) out of three (3) sentences correctly to demonstrate an ability to read in English. There is a reading vocabulary list with all the words found in the English reading portion of the naturalization test included in the back of this booklet. For the writing test, you must write one (1) out of three (3) sentences correctly to demonstrate an ability to write in English. There is a writing vocabulary list with all the words found in the English writing portion of the naturalization test included in the back of this booklet.

Another Option to Help You Study: Civics Flash Cards
The USCIS Civics Flash Cards are a useful study tool to prepare for the naturalization test. These easy-to-use cards have each of the 100 civics (history and government) questions and answers on the new naturalization test. With historical photos and informative captions, the Civics Flash Cards are an additional option to help you prepare for U.S. citizenship. The Civics Flash Cards are available for free online at http://www.uscis.gov/civicsflashcards. Hard copies are available for purchase from the U.S. Government Printing Office (GPO) by calling 1-866-512-1800 (toll-free) or by visiting http://bookstore.gpo.gov and searching for “Civics Flash Cards.”

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Learn About the United States Civics Test
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AMERICAN GOVERNMENT In the United States, the government gets its power to govern from the people. We have a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. Citizens in the United States shape their government and its policies, so they must learn about important public issues and get involved in their communities. Learning about American government helps you understand your rights and responsibilities and allows you to fully participate in the American political process. The Founders of this country decided that the United States should be a representative democracy. They wanted a nation ruled by laws, not by men. In a representative democracy, the people choose officials to make laws and represent their views and concerns in government. The following section will help you understand the principles of American democracy, the U.S. system of government, and the important rights and responsibilities of U.S. citizenship.
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A: Principles of American Democracy 1. What is the supreme law of the land?  the Constitution The Founding Fathers of the United States wrote the Constitution in 1787. The Constitution is the “supreme law of the land.” The U.S. Constitution has lasted longer than any other country’s constitution. It establishes the basic principles of the United States government. The Constitution establishes a system of government called “representative democracy.” In a representative democracy, citizens choose representatives to make the laws. U.S. citizens also choose a president to lead the executive branch of government. The Constitution lists fundamental rights for all citizens and other people living in the United States. Laws made in the United States must follow the Constitution. 2. What does the Constitution do?  sets up the government  defines the government  protects basic rights of Americans The Constitution of the United States divides government power between the national government

and state governments. The name for this division of power is “federalism.” Federalism is an important idea in the Constitution. We call the Founding Fathers who wrote the Constitution the “Framers” of the Constitution. The Framers wanted to limit the powers of the government, so they separated the powers into three branches: executive, legislative, and judicial. The Constitution explains the power of each branch. The Constitution also includes changes and additions, called “amendments.” The first 10 amendments are called the “Bill of Rights.” The Bill of Rights established the individual rights and liberties of all Americans. 3.	 	 he	idea	of	self-government	is	in	the	first	three	 T words of the Constitution. What are these words?  We the People The Constitution says: “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, 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.”

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With the words “We the People,” the Constitution states that the people set up the government. The government works for the people and protects the rights of people. In the United States, the power to govern comes from the people, who are the highest power. This is called “popular sovereignty.” The people elect representatives to make laws. 4. What is an amendment?  a change (to the Constitution)  an addition (to the Constitution) An amendment is a change or addition to the Constitution. The Framers of the Constitution knew that laws can change as a country grows. They did not want to make it too easy to modify the Constitution, the supreme law of the land. The Framers did not want the Constitution to lose its meaning. For this reason, the Framers decided that Congress could pass amendments in only two ways: by a two-thirds vote in the U.S. Senate and the House of Representatives or by a special convention. A special convention has to be requested by two-thirds of the states. After an amendment has passed in Congress or by a special convention, the amendment must then be ratified (accepted) by the legislatures of three-fourths of the states. The amendment can also be ratified by a special convention in three-fourths of the states. Not all proposed amendments are ratified. Six times in U.S. history, amendments have passed in Congress but were not approved by enough states to be ratified. 5.	 	 hat	do	we	call	the	first	ten	amendments	to	the	 W Constitution?  the Bill of Rights The Bill of Rights is the first 10 amendments to the Constitution. When the Framers wrote the Constitution, they did not focus on individual rights. They focused on creating the system and structure of government. Many Americans believed that the Constitution should guarantee the rights of the people, and they wanted a list of all the things a government could not do. They were afraid that a strong government would take away the rights people won in the Revolutionary War. James Madison, one of the Framers of the Constitution, wrote a list of

individual rights and limits on the government. These rights appear in the first 10 amendments, called the Bill of Rights. Some of these rights include freedom of expression, the right to bear arms, freedom from search without warrant, freedom not to be tried twice for the same crime, the right to not testify against yourself, the right to a trial by a jury of your peers, the right to an attorney, and protection against excessive fines and unusual punishments. The Bill of Rights was ratified in 1791. 6. What is one right or freedom from the First Amendment?*  speech  religion  assembly  press  petition the government The First Amendment of the Bill of Rights protects a person’s right to freedom of expression. Freedom of expression allows open discussion and debate on public issues. Open discussion and debate are important to democracy. The First Amendment also protects freedom of religion and free speech. This amendment says that Congress may not pass laws that establish an official religion and may not limit religious expression. Congress may not pass laws that limit freedom of the press or the right of people to meet peacefully. The First Amendment also gives people the right to petition the government to change laws or acts that are not fair. Congress may not take away these rights. The First Amendment of the Constitution guarantees and protects these rights. 7. How many amendments does the Constitution have?  twenty-seven (27) The first 10 amendments to the Constitution are called the Bill of Rights. They were added in 1791. Since then, 17 more amendments have been added. The Constitution currently has 27 amendments. The 27th Amendment was added in 1992. It explains how senators and representatives are paid. Interestingly, Congress first discussed this amendment back in 1789 as one of the original amendments considered for the Bill of Rights.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

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8. What did the Declaration of Independence do?  announced our independence (from Great Britain)  declared our independence (from Great Britain)  said that the United States is free (from Great Britain) The Declaration of Independence contains important ideas about the American system of government. The Declaration of Independence states that all people are created equal and have “certain unalienable rights.” These are rights that no government can change or take away. The author of the Declaration, Thomas Jefferson, wrote that the American colonies should be independent because Great Britain did not respect the basic rights of people in the colonies. Jefferson believed that a government exists only if the people think it should. He believed in the idea that the people create their own government and consent, or agree, to follow laws their government makes. This idea is called “consent of the governed.” If the government creates laws that are fair and protect people, then people will agree to follow those laws. In the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson wrote a list of complaints the colonists had against the King of England. Jefferson ended the Declaration with the statement that the colonies are, and should be, free and independent states. The Second Continental Congress voted to accept the Declaration on July 4, 1776. 9. What are two rights in the Declaration of Independence?  life  liberty  pursuit of happiness The Declaration of Independence lists three rights that the Founding Fathers considered to be natural and “unalienable.” They are the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. These ideas about freedom and individual rights were the basis for declaring America’s independence. Thomas Jefferson and the other Founding Fathers believed that people are born with natural rights that no government can take away. Government exists to protect these rights. Because the people voluntarily give up power to a government, they can take that power back. The British government was not protecting the rights of the colonists, so the colonies took back their power and separated from Great Britain.

Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Thomas Jefferson in “Writing the Declaration of Independence, 1776,” by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZC4-9904.

10. What is freedom of religion?  You can practice any religion, or not practice a religion. Colonists from Spain, France, Holland, England, and other countries came to America for many different reasons. One of the reasons was religious freedom. The rulers of many of these countries told their citizens that they must go to a certain church and worship in a certain way. Some people had different religious beliefs than their rulers and wanted to have their own churches. In 1620, the Pilgrims were the first group that came to America seeking religious freedom. Religious freedom was also important to the Framers. For this reason, freedom of religion was included in the Constitution as part of the Bill of Rights. The First Amendment to the Constitution guarantees freedom of religion. The First Amendment states, “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” The First Amendment also prohibits Congress from setting up an official U.S. religion, and protects citizens’ rights to hold any religious belief, or none at all. 11. What is the economic system in the United States?*  capitalist economy  market economy The economic system of the United States is capitalism. In the American economy, most businesses are privately owned. Competition and profit motivate businesses. Businesses and consumers interact in the marketplace, where prices can be negotiated. This is 3

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called a “market economy.” In a market economy, businesses decide what to produce, how much to produce, and what to charge. Consumers decide what, when, and where they will buy goods or services. In a market economy, competition, supply, and demand influence the decisions of businesses and consumers. 12. What is the “rule of law”?  Everyone must follow the law.  Leaders must obey the law.  Government must obey the law.  No one is above the law. John Adams was one of the Founding Fathers and the second president of the United States. He wrote that our country is, “a government of laws, and not of men.” No person or group is above the law. The rule of law means that everyone (citizens and leaders) must obey the laws. In the United States, the U.S. Constitution is the foundation for the rule of law. The United States is a “constitutional democracy” (a democracy with a constitution). In constitutional democracies, people are willing to obey the laws because the laws are made by the people through their elected representatives. If all people are governed by the same laws, the individual rights and liberties of each person are better protected. The rule of law helps to make sure that government protects all people equally and does not violate the rights of certain people. B: System of Government 13. Name one branch or part of the government.*  Congress  legislative  President  executive  the courts  judicial The Constitution establishes three branches of government: legislative, executive, and judicial. Article I of the Constitution establishes the legislative branch. Article I explains that Congress makes laws. Congress (the Senate and the House of Representatives) is the legislative branch of the U.S. government. Article II of the Constitution establishes the executive branch. 4

The executive branch enforces the laws that Congress passes. The executive branch makes sure all the people follow the laws of the United States. The president is the head of the executive branch. The vice president and members of the president’s cabinet are also part of the executive branch. Article III of the Constitution establishes the judicial branch. The judicial branch places the highest judicial power in the Supreme Court. One responsibility of the judicial branch is to decide if government laws and actions follow the Constitution. This is a very important responsibility. 14. What stops one branch of government from becoming too powerful?  checks and balances  separation of powers The Constitution separates the government’s power into three branches to prevent one person or group from having too much power. The separation of government into three branches creates a system of checks and balances. This means that each branch can block, or threaten to block, the actions of the other branches. Here are some examples: the Senate (part of the legislative branch) can block a treaty signed by the president (the executive branch). In this example, the legislative branch is “checking” the executive. The U.S. Supreme Court (the judicial branch) can reject a law passed by Congress (the legislative branch). In this example, the judicial branch is “checking” the legislative branch. This separation of powers limits the power of the government and prevents the government from violating the rights of the people. 15. Who is in charge of the executive branch?  the President The job of the executive branch is to carry out, or execute, federal laws and enforce laws passed by Congress. The head of the executive branch is the president. The president is both the head of state and the head of government. The president’s powers include the ability to sign treaties with other countries and to select ambassadors to represent the United States around the world. The president also sets national policies and proposes laws to Congress. The president names the top leaders of the federal departments. When there is a vacancy on the Supreme

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

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Court, the president names a new member. However, the Senate has the power to reject the president’s choices. This limit on the power of the president is an example of checks and balances. 16. Who makes federal laws?  Congress  Senate and House (of Representatives)  (U.S. or national) legislature Congress makes federal laws. A federal law usually applies to all states and all people in the United States. Either side of Congress—the Senate or the House of Representatives—can propose a bill to address an issue. When the Senate proposes a bill, it sends the bill to a Senate committee. The Senate committee studies the issue and the bill. When the House of Representatives proposes a bill, it sends the bill to a House of Representatives committee. The committee studies the bill and sometimes makes changes to it. Then the bill goes to the full House or Senate for consideration. When each chamber passes its own version of the bill, it often goes to a “conference committee.” The conference committee has members from both the House and the Senate. This committee discusses the bill, tries to resolve the differences, and writes a report with the final version of the bill. Then the committee sends the final version of the bill back to both houses for approval. If both houses approve the bill, it is considered “enrolled.” An enrolled bill goes to the president to be signed into law. If the president signs the bill, it becomes a federal law. 17. What are the two parts of the U.S. Congress?*  the Senate and House (of Representatives) Congress is divided into two parts—the Senate and the House of Representatives. Because it has two “chambers,” the U.S. Congress is known as a “bicameral” legislature. The system of checks and balances works in Congress. Specific powers are assigned to each of these chambers. For example, only the Senate has the power to reject a treaty signed by the president or a person the president chooses to serve on the Supreme Court. Only the House of Representatives has the power to introduce a bill that requires Americans to pay taxes.

The Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol. Courtesy of the Architect of the Capitol.

18. How many U.S. Senators are there?  one hundred (100) There are 100 senators in Congress, two from each state. All states have equal power in the Senate because each state has the same number of senators. States with a very small population have the same number of senators as states with very large populations. The Framers of the Constitution made sure that the Senate would be small. This would keep it more orderly than the larger House of Representatives. As James Madison wrote in Federalist Paper #63, the Senate should be a “temperate and respectable body of citizens” that operates in a “cool and deliberate” way. 19. We elect a U.S. Senator for how many years?  six (6) The Framers of the Constitution wanted senators to be independent from public opinion. They thought a fairly long, six-year term would give them this protection. They also wanted longer Senate terms to balance the shorter two-year terms of the members of the House, who would more closely follow public opinion. The Constitution puts no limit on the number of terms a senator may serve. Elections for U.S. senators take place on even-numbered years. Every two years, one-third of the senators are up for election. 5

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20. Who is one of your state’s U.S. Senators now?*  Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents and residents of U.S. territories should answer that D.C. (or the territory where the applicant lives) has no U.S. Senators.] For a complete list of U.S. senators and the states they represent, go to http://www.senate.gov. 21. The House of Representatives has how many voting members?  four hundred thirty-five (435) The House of Representatives is the larger chamber of Congress. Since 1912, the House of Representatives has had 435 voting members. However, the distribution of members among the states has changed over the years. Each state must have at least one representative in the House. Beyond that, the number of representatives from each state depends on the population of the state. The Constitution says that the government will conduct a census of the population every 10 years to count the number of people in each state. The results of the census are used to recalculate the number of representatives each state should have. For example, if one state gains many residents that state could get one or more new representatives. If another state loses residents, that state could lose one or more. But the total number of voting U.S. representatives does not change. 22. We elect a U.S. Representative for how many years?  two (2) People who live in a representative’s district are called “constituents.” Representatives tend to reflect the views of their constituents. If representatives do not do this, they may be voted out of office. The Framers of the Constitution believed that short two-year terms and frequent elections would keep representatives close to their constituents, public opinion, and more aware of local and community concerns. The Constitution puts no limit on the number of terms a representative may serve. All representatives are up for election every two years.

23. Name your U.S. Representative.  Answers will vary. [Residents of territories with nonvoting Delegates or Resident Commissioners may provide the name of that Delegate or Commissioner. Also acceptable is any statement that the territory has no (voting) Representatives in Congress.] For a complete list of U.S. representatives and the districts they represent, go to http://www.house.gov. 24. Who does a U.S. Senator represent?  all people of the state Senators are elected to serve the people of their state for six years. Each of the two senators represents the entire state. Before the 17th Amendment to the Constitution was ratified in 1913, the state legislatures elected the U.S. senators to represent their state. Now, all the voters in a state elect their two U.S. senators directly. 25. Why do some states have more Representatives than other states?  (because of) the state’s population  (because) they have more people  (because) some states have more people The Founding Fathers wanted people in all states to be represented fairly. In the House of Representatives, a state’s population determines the number of representatives it has. In this way, states with many people have a stronger voice in the House. In the Senate, every state has the same number of senators. This means that states with few people still have a strong voice in the national government. The state with the most representatives is California, with 53 representatives. The states with the fewest representatives are Alaska, Delaware, Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont, and Wyoming. Each of these states has only one representative in the House. 26. We elect a President for how many years?  four (4) Early American leaders thought that the head of the British government, the king, had too much power. Because of this, they limited the powers of the head

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

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of the new U.S. government. They decided that the people would elect the president every four years. The president is the only official elected by the entire country through the Electoral College. The Electoral College is a process that was designed by the writers of the Constitution to select presidents. It came from a compromise between the president being elected directly by the people and the president being chosen by Congress. Citizens vote for electors, who then choose the president. Before 1951, there was no limit on the number of terms a president could serve. With the 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, the president can only be elected to two terms (four years each) for a total of eight years. 27. In what month do we vote for President?*  November The Constitution did not set a national election day. In the past, elections for federal office took place on different days in different states. In 1845, Congress passed legislation to designate a single day for all Americans to vote. It made Election Day the Tuesday after the first Monday in November. Congress chose November because the United States was mostly rural. By November, farmers had completed their harvests and were available to vote. Another reason for this date was the weather. People were able to travel because it was not yet winter. They chose Tuesday for Election Day so that voters had a full day after Sunday to travel to the polls. 28. What is the name of the President of the United States now?*  Barack Obama  Obama Barack Obama is the 44th president of the United States. He won the presidential election of 2008 and became the first African American president of the United States. As president, he is the head of the executive branch. As commander in chief, he is also in charge of the military. Obama was born in Hawaii on August 4, 1961. He graduated from Columbia University in New York. Obama also studied law and graduated from Harvard University in Massachusetts. He served as a U.S. senator for the state of Illinois before being elected president. President Obama’s wife, called “the First Lady,” is Michelle Obama.

The inauguration of President Theodore Roosevelt on March 4, 1905. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-231.

29. What is the name of the Vice President of the United States now?  Joseph R. Biden, Jr.  Joe Biden  Biden Joseph (Joe) R. Biden, Jr. is the 47th vice president of the United States. Biden was born November 20, 1942 in Pennsylvania. Later, his family moved to Delaware. He graduated from the University of Delaware in 1965. In 1968, he graduated from law school at Syracuse University in New York. From 1972-2009, Biden served as a U.S. senator for the state of Delaware. As vice president, Biden is president of the U.S. Senate and a top advisor to the president. Vice President Biden is married to Jill Biden. 30. If the President can no longer serve, who becomes President?  the Vice President If the president dies, resigns, or cannot work while still in office, the vice president becomes president. For this reason, the qualifications for vice president and president are the same. A vice president became 7



Learn abouT The uniTed sTaTes

president nine times in U.S. history when the president died or left office. William Henry Harrison died in office in 1841. Zachary Taylor died in office in 1850. Abraham Lincoln was killed in office in 1865. James Garfield was killed in office in 1881. William McKinley was killed in office in 1901. Warren Harding died in office in 1923. Franklin Roosevelt died in office in 1945. John F. Kennedy was killed in office in 1963. Richard Nixon resigned from office in 1974. No one other than the vice president has ever succeeded to the presidency. 31. If both the President and the Vice President can no longer serve, who becomes President?  the Speaker of the House If both the president and vice president cannot serve, the next person in line is the speaker of the House of Representatives. This has not always been the procedure. Soon after the country was founded, a law was passed that made the Senate president pro tempore the next in line after the president and vice president. The president pro tempore presides over the Senate when the vice president is not there. Later in U.S. history, the secretary of state was third in line. With the Presidential Succession Act of 1947, Congress returned to the original idea of having a congressional leader next in line. In 1967, the 25th Amendment was ratified. It established procedures for presidential and vice presidential succession. 32. Who is the Commander in Chief of the military?  the President The Founding Fathers strongly believed in republican ideals. A republic is a government where a country’s political power comes from the citizens, not the rulers, and is put into use by representatives elected by the citizens. That is why they made the president the commander in chief. They wanted a civilian selected by the people. They did not want a professional military leader. The president commands the armed forces, but Congress has the power to pay for the armed forces and declare war. In 1973, many members of Congress believed that the president was misusing or abusing his powers as commander in chief. They thought that the president was ignoring the legislative branch and not allowing the system of checks and balances to work. In response, Congress passed the War Powers Act. The War Powers Act 8

gave Congress a stronger voice in decisions about the use of U.S. troops. President Richard Nixon vetoed this bill, but Congress overrode his veto. Because we have a system of checks and balances, one branch of government is able to check the other branches. 33. Who signs bills to become laws?  the President Every law begins as a proposal made by a member of Congress, either a senator (member of the Senate) or representative (member of the House of Representatives). When the Senate or House begins to debate the proposal, it is called a “bill.” After debate in both houses of Congress, if a majority of both the Senate and House vote to pass the bill, it goes to the president. If the president wants the bill to become law, he signs it. If the president does not want the bill to become a law, he vetoes it. The president cannot introduce a bill. If he has an idea for a bill, he must ask a member of Congress to introduce it. 34. Who vetoes bills?  the President The president has veto power. This means that the president can reject a bill passed by Congress. If the president vetoes a bill, he prevents it from becoming a law. The president can send the bill back to Congress unsigned. Often he will list reasons why he rejects it. The president has 10 days to evaluate the bill. If the president does not sign the bill after 10 days and Congress is in session, the bill automatically becomes a law. If the president does nothing with the bill and Congress adjourns within the 10-day period, the bill does not become law—this is called a “pocket veto.” If two-thirds of the House and two-thirds of the Senate vote to pass the bill again, the bill becomes a law, even though the president did not sign it. This process is called “overriding the president’s veto.” It is not easy to do. 35. What does the President’s Cabinet do?  advises the President The Constitution says that the leaders of the executive departments should advise the president. These department leaders, most of them called “secretaries,” make up the cabinet. The president nominates the



*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

cabinet members to be his advisors. For a nominee to be confirmed, a majority of the Senate must approve the nominee. Throughout history, presidents have been able to change who makes up the cabinet or add departments to the cabinet. For example, when the Department of Homeland Security was created, President George W. Bush added the leader of this department to his cabinet. 36. What are two Cabinet-level positions?  Secretary of Agriculture  Secretary of Commerce  Secretary of Defense  Secretary of Education  Secretary of Energy  Secretary of Health and Human Services  Secretary of Homeland Security  Secretary of Housing and Urban Development  Secretary of the Interior  Secretary of Labor  Secretary of State  Secretary of Transportation  Secretary of the Treasury  Secretary of Veterans Affairs  Attorney General  Vice President The people on the president’s cabinet are the vice president and the heads of the 15 executive departments. The president may appoint other government officials to the cabinet, but no elected official may serve on the cabinet while in office. When George Washington was president, there were only four cabinet members: the secretary of state, secretary of the treasury, secretary of war, and attorney general. The government established the other executive departments later. 37. What does the judicial branch do?  reviews laws  explains laws  resolves disputes (disagreements)  decides if a law goes against the Constitution The judicial branch is one of the three branches of government. The Constitution established the judicial

The Contemplation of Justice statue outside the U.S. Supreme Court building in Washington, D.C. Courtesy of the Collection of the Supreme Court of the United States.

branch of government with the creation of the Supreme Court. Congress created the other federal courts. All these courts together make up the judicial branch. The courts review and explain the laws, and they resolve disagreements about the meaning of the law. The U.S. Supreme Court makes sure that laws are consistent with the Constitution. If a law is not consistent with the Constitution, the Court can declare it unconstitutional. In this case, the Court rejects the law. The Supreme Court makes the final decision about all cases that have to do with federal laws and treaties. It also rules on other cases, such as disagreements between states. 38. What is the highest court in the United States?  the Supreme Court The U.S. Supreme Court has complete authority over all federal courts. Its rulings have a significant effect. A Supreme Court ruling can affect the outcome of many cases in the lower courts. The Supreme Court’s interpretations of federal laws and of the Constitution are final. The Supreme Court is limited in its power over the states. It cannot make decisions about state



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law or state constitutions. The Court can decide that a state law or action conflicts with federal law or with the U.S. Constitution. If this happens, the state law becomes invalid. The Supreme Court case ruling Marbury v. Madison established this power, known as “judicial review.” The Supreme Court also rules on cases about significant social and public policy issues that affect all Americans. The Supreme Court ruled on the court case Brown v. the Board of Education of Topeka, which ended racial segregation in schools. 39. How many justices are on the Supreme Court?  nine (9) The Constitution does not establish the number of justices on the Supreme Court. In the past, there have been as many as 10 and as few as six justices. Now, there are nine justices on the Supreme Court: eight associate justices and one chief justice. The associate justices are Ruth Bader Ginsburg, David Hackett Souter, Clarence Thomas, Stephen G. Breyer, Antonin Scalia, John Paul Stevens, Anthony M. Kennedy, and Samuel Anthony Alito, Jr. The chief justice of the United States is John G. Roberts, Jr. Justices serve on the court for life or until they retire. For more information on the U.S. Supreme Court, go to http://www.supremecourtus.gov. 40. Who is the Chief Justice of the United States now?  John Roberts (John G. Roberts, Jr.) John G. Roberts, Jr. is the 17th chief justice of the United States. After the death of former chief justice William Rehnquist in September 2005, President George W. Bush nominated Roberts for this position. Judge Roberts became chief justice when he was 50. He is the youngest chief justice since 1801, when John Marshall became chief justice at the age of 45. Before he became chief justice, Judge Roberts served on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit. Although the chief justice of the United States is the highest official in the judicial branch, his vote on the Supreme Court carries the same weight as the other justices.

41. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the federal government. What is one power of the federal government?  to print money  to declare war  to create an army  to make treaties The powers of government are divided between the federal government and the state governments. The federal government is known as a limited government. Its powers are restricted to those described in the U.S. Constitution. The Constitution gives the federal government the power to print money, declare war, create an army, and make treaties with other nations. Most other powers that are not given to the federal government in the Constitution belong to the states. 42. Under our Constitution, some powers belong to the states. What is one power of the states?  provide schooling and education  provide protection (police)  provide safety (fire departments)  give a driver’s license  approve zoning and land use In the United States, the federal and state governments both hold power. Before the Constitution, the 13 colonies governed themselves individually much like state governments. It was not until the Articles of Confederation and then the Constitution that a national or federal government was established. Today, although each state has its own constitution, these state constitutions cannot conflict with the U.S. Constitution. The U.S. Constitution is the supreme law of the land. The state governments hold powers not given to the federal government in the U.S. Constitution. Some powers of the state government are the power to create traffic regulations and marriage requirements, and to issue driver’s licenses. The Constitution also provides a list of powers that the states do not have. For example, states cannot coin (create) money. The state and federal governments also share some powers, such as the ability to tax people.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

43. Who is the Governor of your state now?  Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents should answer that D.C. does not have a Governor.] To learn the name of the governor of your state or territory, go to http://www.usa.gov and select the state government link. Similar to the federal government, most states have three branches of government. The branches are executive, legislative, and judicial. The governor is the chief executive of the state. The governor’s job in a state government is similar to the president’s job in the federal government. However, the state laws that a governor carries out are different from the federal laws that the president carries out. The Constitution says that certain issues are covered by federal, not state, laws. All other issues are covered by state laws. The governor’s duties and powers vary from state to state. The number of years that a governor is elected to serve—called a “term”—is four years. The exceptions are New Hampshire and Vermont, where governors serve for two years. 44. What is the capital of your state?*  Answers will vary. [District of Columbia residents should answer that D.C. is not a state and does not have a capital. Residents of U.S. territories should name the capital of the territory.] To learn the capital of your state or territory, go to http://www.usa.gov and select the state government link. Each state or territory has its own capital. The state capital is where the state government conducts its business. It is similar to the nation’s capital, Washington, D.C., where the federal government conducts its business. Some state capitals have moved from one city to another over the years, but the state capitals have not changed since 1910. Usually, the governor lives in the state’s capital city. 45. What are the two major political parties in the United States?*  Democratic and Republican The Constitution did not establish political parties. President George Washington specifically warned against them. But early in U.S. history, two political
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states_capitals2.pdf INTERIOR-GEOLOGICAL SURVEY, RESTON, VIRGINIA-2003

groups developed. They were the DemocraticRepublicans and the Federalists. Today, the two major political parties are the Democratic Party and the Republican Party. President Andrew Jackson created the Democratic Party from the DemocraticRepublicans. The Republican Party took over from the Whigs as a major party in the 1860s. The first Republican president was Abraham Lincoln. Throughout U.S. history, there have been other parties. These parties have included the Know-Nothing (also called American Party), Bull-Moose (also called Progressive), Reform, and Green parties. They have played various roles in American politics. Political party membership in the United States is voluntary. Parties are made up of people who organize to promote their candidates for election and to promote their views about public policies. 46. What is the political party of the President now?  Democratic (Party) The two major political parties in the United States today are the Democratic and Republican parties. The current president, Barack Obama, is a member of the Democratic Party. Other notable Democratic presidents include Woodrow Wilson, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Harry Truman, John F. Kennedy, Lyndon B. Johnson, Jimmy Carter, and William “Bill” Clinton. Notable Republican presidents include Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Warren Harding, Herbert Hoover, Dwight Eisenhower, Ronald Reagan, and George H. W. Bush. Since the middle of the 19th

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century, the symbol of the Republican Party has been the elephant. The Republican Party is also known as the “Grand Old Party” or the “GOP.” The symbol of the Democratic Party is the donkey. 47. What is the name of the Speaker of the House of Representatives now?  (Nancy) Pelosi The current speaker of the House of Representatives is Nancy Pelosi. She is the first woman in American history and the first Californian to be speaker. She has represented California’s Eighth District in the House of Representatives since 1987. As speaker, she presides over the House of Representatives and leads the majority political party in the House, the Democratic Party. The speaker is second in line to the succession of the presidency after the vice president. C: Rights and Responsibilities 48. There are four amendments to the Constitution about who can vote. Describe one of them.  Citizens eighteen (18) and older (can vote).  You don’t have to pay (a poll tax) to vote.  Any citizen can vote. (Women and men can vote.)  A male citizen of any race (can vote). Voting is one of the most important civic responsibilities of citizens in the United States. In a democratic society, the people choose the leaders who will represent them. There are four amendments to the Constitution about voting. The 15th Amendment permits American men of all races to vote. It was written after the Civil War and the end of slavery. The 19th Amendment gave women the right to vote. It resulted from the women’s suffrage movement (the women’s rights movement). After the 15th Amendment was passed, some leaders of the southern states were upset that African Americans could vote. These leaders designed fees called poll taxes to stop them from voting. The 24th Amendment made these poll taxes illegal. The 26th Amendment lowered the voting age from 21 to 18.

49. What is one responsibility that is only for United States citizens?*  serve on a jury  vote in a federal election Two responsibilities of U.S. citizens are to serve on a jury and vote in federal elections. The Constitution gives citizens the right to a trial by a jury. The jury is made up of U.S. citizens. Participation of citizens on a jury helps ensure a fair trial. Another important responsibility of citizens is voting. The law does not require citizens to vote, but voting is a very important part of any democracy. By voting, citizens are participating in the democratic process. Citizens vote for leaders to represent them and their ideas, and the leaders support the citizens’ interests. 50. Name one right only for United States citizens.  vote in a federal election  run for federal office U.S. citizens have the right to vote in federal elections. Legal permanent residents can vote in local or state elections that do not require voters to be U.S. citizens. Only U.S. citizens can vote in federal elections. U.S. citizens can also run for federal office. Qualifications to run for the Senate or House of Representatives include being a U.S. citizen for a certain number of years. A candidate for Senate must be a U.S. citizen for at least 9 years. A candidate for the House must be a U.S. citizen for at least 7 years. To run for president of the United States, a candidate must be a native-born (not naturalized) citizen. In addition to the benefits of citizenship, U.S. citizens have certain responsibilities— to respect the law, stay informed on issues, participate in the democratic process, and pay their taxes. 51. What are two rights of everyone living in the United States?  freedom of expression  freedom of speech  freedom of assembly  freedom to petition the government  freedom of worship  the right to bear arms Thomas Jefferson said, “[The] best principles [of our republic] secure to all its citizens a perfect equality of

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

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rights.” Millions of immigrants have come to America to have these rights. The Constitution and the Bill of Rights give many of these rights to all people living in the United States. These rights include the freedom of expression, of religion, of speech, and the right to bear arms. All people living in the United States also have many of the same duties as citizens, such as paying taxes and obeying the laws. 52. What do we show loyalty to when we say the Pledge of Allegiance?  the United States  the flag The flag is an important symbol of the United States. The Pledge of Allegiance to the flag states, “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.” When we say the Pledge of Allegiance, we usually stand facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. Francis Bellamy wrote the pledge. It was first published in The Youth’s Companion magazine in 1892 for children to say on the anniversary of Columbus’s discovery of America. Congress officially recognized the pledge on June 22, 1942. Two changes have been made since it was written in 1892. “I pledge allegiance to my flag” was changed to “I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America.” Congress added the phrase “under God” on June 14, 1954. 53. What is one promise you make when you become a United States citizen?  give up loyalty to other countries  defend the Constitution and laws of the United States  obey the laws of the United States  serve in the U.S. military (if needed)  serve (do important work for) the nation (if needed)  be loyal to the United States When the United States became an independent country, the Constitution gave Congress the power to establish a uniform rule of naturalization. Congress made rules about how immigrants could become citizens. Many of these requirements are still valid today, such as the requirements to live in the United States for a specific period of time, to be of good

The American flag is an important symbol of the United States.

moral character, and to understand and support the principles of the Constitution. After an immigrant fulfills all of the requirements to become a U.S. citizen, the final step is to take an Oath of Allegiance at a naturalization ceremony. The Oath of Allegiance states, “I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.” 54. How old do citizens have to be to vote for President?*  eighteen (18) and older For most of U.S. history, Americans had to be at least 21 years old to vote. At the time of the Vietnam War, during the 1960s and 1970s, many people thought that people who were old enough to fight in a war should also be old enough to vote. In 1971, the 26th 13

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Amendment changed the minimum voting age from 21 to 18 for all federal, state, and local elections. The National Voter Registration Act of 1993 made it easier for people to register to vote. Now they can register to vote by mail, at public assistance offices, or when they apply for or renew their driver’s license. 55. What are two ways that Americans can participate in their democracy?  vote  join a political party  help with a campaign  join a civic group  join a community group  give an elected official your opinion on an issue  call Senators and Representatives  publicly support or oppose an issue or policy  run for office  write to a newspaper Citizens play an active part in their communities. When Americans engage in the political process, democracy stays alive and strong. There are many ways for people to be involved. They can volunteer to help new immigrants learn English and civics, join the Parent Teacher Association (PTA) of their child’s school, run for a position on the local school board, or volunteer to help at a polling station. People can also vote, help with a political campaign, join a civic or community organization, or call their senator or representative about an issue that is important to them. 56. When is the last day you can send in federal income tax forms?*  April 15 The last day to send in your federal income tax to the Internal Revenue Service is April 15 of each year. The Constitution gave the federal government the power to collect taxes. The federal government needs money to pay the nation’s debts and to defend and provide for the needs of the country. When the country was young, it was difficult to raise money from the 13

original states. The government began collecting income tax for the first time through the Revenue Act of 1861. This was only temporary. In 1894, a flatrate federal income tax was enacted, but the Supreme Court said this was unconstitutional. Finally, in 1913, the 16th Amendment was ratified. It gave Congress the power to collect income taxes. Today, “taxable income” is money that is earned from wages, selfemployment, tips, and the sale of property. The government uses these taxes to keep our country safe and secure. It also tries to cure and prevent diseases through research. In addition, the government protects our money in banks by insuring it, educates children and adults, and builds and repairs our roads and highways. Taxes are used to do these things and many more. 57. When must all men register for the Selective Service?  at age eighteen (18)  between eighteen (18) and twenty-six (26) President Lincoln tried to draft men to fight during the Civil War, but many people became angry and rioted. In 1917, Congress passed the Selective Service Act. This act gave President Woodrow Wilson the power to temporarily increase the U.S. military during World War I. In 1940, President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Selective Training and Service Act, which created the first draft during peacetime. This was the beginning of the Selective Service System in the United States today. The draft was needed again for the Korean and Vietnam Wars. Today, there is no draft, but all men between 18 and 26 years old must register with the Selective Service System. When a man registers, he tells the government that he is available to serve in the U.S. Armed Forces. He can register at a United States post office or on the Internet. To register for Selective Service on the Internet, visit the Selective Service website at http://www.sss.gov.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT
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AMERICAN HISTORY For more than 200 years, the United States has strived to become a “more perfect union.” Its history has been one of expansive citizenship for all Americans. By learning about our shared history, you will be able to understand our nation’s traditions, milestones, and common civic values. Our country is independent because of the strength, unity, and determination of our forefathers. It is important for future Americans to know this story. We are people working toward great ideals and principles guided by equality and fairness. This is important to keep our country free. As Americans, we have been committed to each other and our country throughout our history. The following section will help you understand American history from the colonial period and independence to the Civil War and other important events during the 1800s, 1900s, and today.
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A: Colonial Period and Independence 58. What is one reason colonists came to America?  freedom  political liberty  religious freedom  economic opportunity  practice their religion  escape persecution In the 1600s and 1700s, colonists from England and other European countries sailed across the Atlantic Ocean to the American colonies. Some left Europe to escape religious restrictions or persecution, to practice their religion freely. Many came for political freedom, and some came for economic opportunity. These freedoms and opportunities often did not exist in the colonists’ home countries. For these settlers, the American colonies were a chance for freedom and a new life. Today, many people come to the United States for these same reasons. 59. Who lived in America before the Europeans arrived?  American Indians  Native Americans Great American Indian tribes such as the Navajo, Sioux, Cherokee, and Iroquois lived in America at the time the Pilgrims arrived. The Pilgrims settled in an area where a tribe called the Wampanoag lived. The Wampanoag taught the Pilgrims important skills, such as how to farm with different methods and how to grow crops such as corn, beans, and squash. Relations

with some American Indian tribes became tense and confrontational as more Europeans moved to America and migrated west. Eventually, after much violence, the settlers defeated those American Indian tribes and took much of their land. 60. What group of people was taken to America and sold as slaves?  Africans  people from Africa Slavery existed in many countries long before America was founded. By 1700, many Africans were being brought to the American colonies as slaves. Men, women, and children were brought against their will. They were often separated from their families when they were sold as slaves. Slaves worked without payment and without basic rights. Most worked in agriculture, but slaves did many other kinds of work in the colonies, too. Slavery created a challenge for a nation founded on individual freedoms and democratic beliefs. It was one of the major causes of the American Civil War. 61.	Why	did	the	colonists	fight	the	British?  because of high taxes (taxation without representation)  because the British army stayed in their houses (boarding, quartering)  because they didn’t have self-government The American colonists’ anger had been growing for years before the Revolutionary War began in 1775. The decision to separate from the British was not an easy choice for many colonists. However, Great 15

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Learn abouT The uniTed sTaTes

Britain’s “repeated injuries” against the Americans, as noted in the Declaration of Independence, convinced many to join the rebellion. The British taxed the colonists without their consent, and the colonists had nobody to represent their needs and ideas to the British government. They were also angry because ordinary colonists were forced to let British soldiers sleep and eat in their homes. The colonists believed the British did not respect their basic rights. The British governed the colonists without their consent, denying them self-government. 62. Who wrote the Declaration of Independence?  (Thomas) Jefferson Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence in 1776. He was a very important political leader and thinker. Some of the most important ideas about the American government are found in the Declaration of Independence, such as the idea that all people are created equal. Another important idea is that people are born with certain rights including life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Jefferson was the third president of the United States, serving from 1801 to 1809. Before becoming president, Jefferson was governor of Virginia and the first U.S. secretary of state. He strongly supported individual rights, especially freedom of religion. Jefferson wanted to protect these rights. For this reason, he did not want a strong national government. 63. When was the Declaration of Independence adopted?  July 4, 1776 In 1774, representatives from 12 of the 13 colonies met in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for the First Continental Congress. Of the 13 colonies, only Georgia was absent. These representatives were angry about British laws that treated them unfairly. They began to organize an army. The Second Continental Congress met in 1775 after fighting began between the colonists and the British Army. This Congress asked Thomas Jefferson and others to write the Declaration of Independence. When Thomas Jefferson finished his draft of the Declaration of Independence, he took

it to John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and the others on the committee to review it. After changes were made by the committee, the Declaration was read to the members of the entire Congress. The purpose of the Declaration was to announce the separation of the colonies from England. The Declaration of Independence stated that if a government does not protect the rights of the people, the people can create a new government. For this reason, the colonists separated from their British rulers. On July 4, 1776, the Second Continental Congress adopted the Declaration of Independence. 64. There were 13 original states. Name three.  New Hampshire  Delaware  Massachusetts  Maryland  Rhode Island  Virginia  Connecticut  North Carolina  New York  South Carolina  New Jersey  Georgia  Pennsylvania The 13 original states were all former British colonies. Representatives from these colonies came together and declared independence from Great Britain in 1776. After the Revolutionary War, the colonies became free and independent states. When the 13 colonies became states, each state set up its own government. They wrote state constitutions. Eventually, the people in these states created a new form of national government that would unite all the states into a single nation under the U.S. Constitution. The first three colonies to become states were Delaware, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. This happened in 1787. Eight colonies became states in 1788. These were Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, and New York. North Carolina became a state in 1789. Rhode Island became a state in 1790. Although the colonies were recognized as states after the Declaration of Independence, the date of statehood is based on when they ratified (accepted) the U.S. Constitution. Today, the United States has 50 states.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

65. What happened at the Constitutional Convention?  The Constitution was written.  The Founding Fathers wrote the Constitution. The Constitutional Convention was held in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, from May to September 1787. Fifty-five delegates from 12 of the original 13 states (except for Rhode Island) met to write amendments to the Articles of Confederation. The delegates met because many American leaders did not like the Articles. The national government under the Articles of Confederation was not strong enough. Instead of changing the Articles of Confederation, the delegates decided to create a new governing document with a stronger national government—the Constitution. Each state sent delegates, who worked for four months in secret to allow for free and open discussion as they wrote the new document. The delegates who attended the Constitutional Convention are called “the Framers.” On September 17, 1787, 39 of the delegates signed the new Constitution. 66. When was the Constitution written?  1787 The Constitution, written in 1787, created a new system of U.S. government—the same system we have today. James Madison was the main writer of the Constitution. He became the fourth president of the United States. The U.S. Constitution is short, but it defines the principles of government and the rights of citizens in the United States. The document has a preamble and seven articles. Since its adoption, the Constitution has been amended (changed) 27 times. Three-fourths of the states (9 of the original 13) were required to ratify (approve) the Constitution. Delaware was the first state to ratify the Constitution on December 7, 1787. In 1788, New Hampshire was the ninth state to ratify the Constitution. On March 4, 1789, the Constitution took effect and Congress met for the first time. George Washington was inaugurated as president the same year. By 1790, all 13 states had ratified the Constitution.

The Constitution of the United States. Courtesy of the National Archives.

67. The Federalist Papers supported the passage of the U.S. Constitution. Name one of the writers.  (James) Madison  (Alexander) Hamilton  (John) Jay  Publius The Federalist Papers were 85 essays that were printed in New York newspapers while New York State was deciding whether or not to support the U.S. Constitution. The essays were written in 1787 and 1788 by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison under the pen name “Publius.” The essays explained why the state should ratify the Constitution. Other newspapers outside New York also published the essays as other states were deciding to ratify the Constitution. In 1788, the papers were published together in a book called The Federalist. Today, people still read the Federalist Papers to help them understand the Constitution.

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68. What is one	thing	Benjamin	Franklin	is	famous	 for?  U.S. diplomat  oldest member of the Constitutional Convention  first Postmaster General of the United States  writer of “Poor Richard’s Almanac”  started the first free libraries Benjamin Franklin was one of the most influential Founding Fathers of the United States. He was the oldest delegate to the Constitutional Convention and one of the signers of the U.S. Constitution. He was a printer, author, politician, diplomat, and inventor. By his mid-20s, he was an accomplished printer, and he began writing books and papers. Franklin’s most famous publication was Poor Richard’s Almanac. He also organized America’s first library. Its members loaned books to one another. He was very active in colonial politics. He also visited England and France many times as a U.S. diplomat. In 1775, the Second Continental Congress appointed Franklin the first postmaster general. 69. Who is the “Father of Our Country”?  (George) Washington George Washington is called the Father of Our Country. He was the first American president. Before that, he was a brave general who led the Continental Army to victory over Great Britain during the American Revolutionary War. After his victory over the British Army, Washington retired to his farm in Virginia named Mount Vernon. He left retirement to help create the new country’s system of government. He presided over the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. 70.	Who	was	the	first	President?*  (George) Washington George Washington was the first president of the United States. He began his first term in 1789. He served for a second term beginning in 1793. Washington played an important role in forming the new nation and encouraged Americans to unite. He also helped define the American presidency. He voluntarily resigned from the presidency after two terms. He set an example for future leaders in his 18

own country and the world by voluntarily giving up power. The tradition of a president serving no more than two terms continued in the United States until Franklin D. Roosevelt, who was elected to office four times (1933–1945). The 22nd Amendment to the Constitution, passed in 1947, now limits presidents to two terms. B: 1800s 71. What territory did the United States buy from France in 1803?  the Louisiana Territory  Louisiana The Louisiana Territory was a large area west of the Mississippi River. It was 828,000 square miles. In 1803, the United States bought the Louisiana Territory from France for $15 million. The Louisiana Purchase Treaty was signed in Paris on April 30, 1803. It was the largest acquisition of land in American history. Farmers could now ship their farm products down the Mississippi River without permission from other countries. This was important because the city of New Orleans was a major shipping port. The Louisiana Purchase doubled the size of the United States and expanded it westward. Meriwether Lewis and William Clark led an expedition to map the Louisiana Territory. 72. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1800s.  War of 1812  Mexican-American War  Civil War  Spanish-American War The United States fought four major wars in the 1800s—the War of 1812, the Mexican-American War, the Civil War, and the Spanish-American War. The War of 1812 lasted from 1812 through 1815. President James Madison asked Congress to declare war on Great Britain. The British were stopping and seizing American ships. They were also arming American Indians to fight against the Americans. As a result of this war, the nation’s trade was disrupted and the U.S.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

Capitol was burned. The Americans won the war. This was the first time after the Revolutionary War that America had to fight a foreign country to protect its independence. The Mexican-American War was a conflict between Mexico and America. The war began in Texas in 1846. President James Polk ordered General Zachary Taylor and his forces to occupy land claimed by both the United States and Mexico. President Polk believed westward expansion was important for the United States to grow. When Mexico attacked, the United States went to war with Mexico. When the war ended in February 1848, the United States and Mexico signed the Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo. This treaty gave Texas to the United States and extended the boundaries of the United States west to the Pacific Ocean. In the Civil War, the people of the United States fought against each other. Americans in the northern states fought to support the federal government (“the Union”) against Americans from the southern states. The southern states were trying to separate themselves to form a new nation, the Confederate States of America (“the Confederacy”). The war lasted from 1861 to 1865, when the Confederate army surrendered to the Union army. Many lives were lost in the American Civil War. In 1898, the United States fought Spain in the SpanishAmerican War. The United States wanted to help Cuba become independent from Spain because the United States had economic interests in Cuba. The war began when a U.S. battleship was sunk near Cuba. Many Americans believed it was the Spanish who attacked the ship. For this reason, America went to war with Spain. By the end of 1898, the war was over with a victory for the United States. Cuba had its independence, and Guam, Puerto Rico, and the Philippines became territories of the United States. 73. Name the U.S. war between the North and the South.  the Civil War  the War between the States The American Civil War is also known as the War between the States. It was a war between the people in the northern states and those in the southern

Civil War soldiers with cannon and caisson, Fort C.F. Smith, Co. L, 2d New York Artillery. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-115177.

states. The Civil War was fought in many places across the United States, but most battles were fought in the southern states. The first battle was at Fort Sumter, South Carolina. The first major battle between the northern (Union) army and the southern (Confederate) army took place at Bull Run, in Manassas, Virginia, in July 1861. The Union expected the war to end quickly. After its defeat at the Battle of Bull Run, the Union realized that the war would be long and difficult. In 1865, the Civil War ended with the capture of the Confederate capital in Richmond, Virginia. Confederate General Robert E. Lee surrendered to Lt. General Ulysses S. Grant of the Union army at Appomattox Courthouse in central Virginia. Over the four-year period, more than 3 million Americans fought in the Civil War and more than 600,000 people died. 74. Name one problem that led to the Civil War.  slavery  economic reasons  states’ rights The Civil War began when 11 southern states voted to secede (separate) from the United States to form their own country, the Confederate States of America. These southern states believed that the federal government of the United States threatened their right to make their own decisions. They wanted states’ rights with each state making their own decisions about their government. If the national government contradicted the state, they did not want to follow the national government. The North and South had very

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different economic systems. The South’s agriculturebased economy depended heavily on slave labor. The southern states feared that the United States government would end slavery. The southern states believed that this would hurt their economic and political independence. The economy of the northern states was more industrial and did not depend on slavery. The northern states fought to keep all the United States together in “the Union.” They tried to stop the southern states from separating into a new Confederate nation. There were also many people in the North who wanted to end slavery. These differences led to the American Civil War, which lasted from 1861 until 1865. 75. What was one important thing that Abraham Lincoln did?*  freed the slaves (Emancipation Proclamation)  saved (or preserved) the Union  led the United States during the Civil War Abraham Lincoln was president of the United States from 1861 to 1865, and led the nation during the Civil War. Lincoln thought the separation of the southern (Confederate) states was unconstitutional, and he wanted to preserve the Union. In 1863, during the Civil War, he issued the Emancipation Proclamation. It declared that the slaves who lived in the rebelling Confederate states were forever free. Lincoln is also famous for his “Gettysburg Address.” He gave that speech at Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, in November 1863. Earlier that year, at the Battle of Gettysburg, the northern (Union) army had won a major battle to stop the Confederate army from invading the North. To honor the many who died in this battle, the governor of Pennsylvania established the Soldiers’ National Cemetery at Gettysburg. Lincoln spoke at the dedication ceremony and praised those who fought and died in battle. He asked those still living to rededicate themselves to saving the Union so that “government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.” On April 14, 1865, soon after taking office for his second term, Abraham Lincoln was killed by a southern supporter, John Wilkes Booth, at Ford’s Theatre in Washington, D.C.

76. What did the Emancipation Proclamation do?  freed the slaves  freed slaves in the Confederacy  freed slaves in the Confederate states  freed slaves in most Southern states In 1863, in the middle of the Civil War, President Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation. The Emancipation Proclamation declared that slaves living in the southern or Confederate states were free. Many slaves joined the Union army. In 1865, the Civil War ended and the southern slaves kept their right to be free. The Emancipation Proclamation led to the 13th Amendment to the Constitution, which ended slavery in all of the United States. 77.	What	did	Susan	B.	Anthony	do?  fought for women’s rights  fought for civil rights Susan B. Anthony was born in Massachusetts on February 15, 1820. She is known for campaigning for the right of women to vote. She spoke out publicly against slavery and for equal treatment of women in the workplace. In 1920, the 19th Amendment to the Constitution gave women the right to vote. Susan B. Anthony died 14 years before the adoption of the 19th Amendment, but it was still widely known as the Susan B. Anthony Amendment. In 1979, she became the first woman whose image appeared on a circulating U.S. coin. The coin is called the Susan B. Anthony dollar and is worth one dollar. C: Recent American History and Other Important Historical Information 78. Name one war fought by the United States in the 1900s.*  World War I  World War II  Korean War  Vietnam War  (Persian) Gulf War The United States fought five wars in the 1900s: World War I, World War II, the Korean War, the Vietnam War, and the (Persian) Gulf War.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

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World War I began in 1914. It was a long and bloody struggle. The United States entered the war in 1917 after German submarines attacked British and U.S. ships, and the Germans contacted Mexico about starting a war against the United States. The war ended in 1918 when the Allied Powers (led by Britain, France, and the United States) defeated the Central Powers (led by Germany, Austria-Hungary, and the Ottoman Empire). The Treaty of Versailles officially ended the war in 1919. World War I was called “the war to end all wars.” World War II began in 1939 when Germany invaded Poland. France and Great Britain then declared war on Germany. Germany had alliances with Italy and Japan, and together they formed the Axis powers. The United States entered World War II in 1941, after the Japanese attacked Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. The United States joined France and Great Britain as the Allied powers and led the 1944 invasion of France known as D-Day. The liberation of Europe from German power was completed by May 1945. World War II did not end until Japan surrendered in August 1945. The Korean War began in 1950 when the North Korean Army moved across the 38th parallel into South Korea. The 38th parallel was a boundary established after World War II. This boundary separated the northern area of Korea, which was under communist influence, from the southern area of Korea, which was allied with the United States. At the time, the United States was providing support to establish a democratic South Korean government. The United States provided military support to stop the advance of the North Korean Army. In the Korean conflict, democratic governments directly confronted communist governments. The fighting ended in 1953, with the establishment of the countries of North Korea and South Korea. From 1959 to 1975, United States Armed Forces and the South Vietnamese Army fought against the North Vietnamese in the Vietnam War. The United States supported the democratic government in the south of the country to help it resist pressure from the communist north. The war ended in 1975 with the temporary separation of the country into communist North Vietnam and democratic South Vietnam. In 1976, Vietnam was under total communist control.

“Raising the Flag on Iwo Jima,” photographed by Joe Rosenthal, Associated Press, 1945. Courtesy of the National Archives, 80-G-413988.

Almost 60,000 American men and women in the military died or were missing as a result of the Vietnam War. On August 2, 1990, the Persian Gulf War began when Iraq invaded Kuwait. This invasion put the Iraqi Army closer to Saudi Arabia and its oil reserves, which supplied much of the world with oil. The United States and many other countries wanted to drive the Iraqi Army out of Kuwait and prevent it from invading other nearby countries. In January 1991, the United States led an international coalition of forces authorized by the United Nations into battle against the Iraqi Army. Within a month, the coalition had driven the Iraqis from Kuwait. The coalition declared a cease-fire on February 28, 1991. 79. Who was President during World War I?  (Woodrow) Wilson Woodrow Wilson was the 28th president of the United States. President Wilson served two terms from 1913 to 1921. During his first term, he was able to keep the United States out of World War I. By 1917, Wilson knew this was no longer possible, and he asked 21

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Congress to declare war on Germany. On January 8, 1918, he made a speech to Congress outlining “Fourteen Points” that justified the war and called for a plan to maintain peace after the war. President Wilson said, “We entered this war because violations of right had occurred which touched us to the quick and made the life of our own people impossible unless they were corrected and the world secure once for all against their recurrence.” The war ended that year and Wilson traveled to Paris to work out the details of the surrender by Germany. 80. Who was President during the Great Depression and World War II?  (Franklin) Roosevelt Franklin Delano Roosevelt (FDR) was president of the United States from 1933 until 1945. He was elected during the Great Depression, which was a period of economic crisis after the stock market crash of 1929. His program for handling the crisis was called “the New Deal.” It included programs to create jobs and provided benefits and financial security for workers across the country. Under his leadership, the Social Security Administration (SSA) was established in 1935. Roosevelt led the nation into World War II after Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor in December 1941. He gave the country a sense of hope and strength during a time of great struggle. Roosevelt was elected to office four times. He died in 1945, early in his fourth term as president. His wife, Eleanor Roosevelt, was a human rights leader throughout her lifetime. 81.		 ho	did	the	United	States	fight	in	 W World War II?  Japan, Germany, and Italy The Japanese bombed U.S. naval bases in a surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, on December 7, 1941. The next day, President Franklin D. Roosevelt, as commander in chief of the military, obtained an official declaration of war from Congress. Japan’s partners in the Axis, Italy and Germany, then declared war on the United States. The Allies fought against the German Nazis, the Italian Fascists, and Japan’s military empire. This was truly a world war, with battles fought in Europe, Africa, Asia, and the Pacific Ocean.

82.		 efore	he	was	President,	Eisenhower	was	a	 B general. What war was he in?  World War II Before becoming the 34th president of the United States in 1953, Dwight D. Eisenhower served as a major general in World War II. As commander of U.S. forces and supreme commander of the Allies in Europe, he led the successful D-Day invasion of Normandy, France, on June 6, 1944. In 1952, he retired from active service in the military. He was elected president of the United States later that year. As president, he established the interstate highway system and in 1953, the Department of Health, Education, and Welfare (now known as Health and Human Services) was created. He oversaw the end of the Korean War. Eisenhower left the White House in 1961, after serving two terms as president. 83. During the Cold War, what was the main concern of the United States?  Communism The main concern of the United States during the Cold War was the spread of communism. The Soviet Union (Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, or USSR) was a powerful nation that operated under the principles of communism. The United States and its allies believed that a democratic government and a capitalist economy were the best ways to preserve individual rights and freedoms. The United States and its allies feared the expansion of communism to countries outside the Soviet Union. The Cold War began shortly after the end of World War II and lasted for more than 40 years. It ended with the fall of the Berlin Wall in 1989, the reunification of East and West Germany in 1990, and the breakup of the USSR in 1991. 84. What movement tried to end racial discrimination?  civil rights (movement) The modern civil rights movement in the United States began in 1954 when the Supreme Court ruled that racial segregation in public schools was unconstitutional. The goal of the civil rights movement was to end racial discrimination against

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

African Americans and to gain full and equal rights for Americans of all races. Using nonviolent strategies such as bus boycotts, sit-ins, and marches, people came together to demand social change. As a result, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The Civil Rights Act made segregation in public facilities and racial discrimination in employment and education illegal. The law protects African Americans, women, and others from discrimination. The Voting Rights Act banned literacy tests and other special requirements that had been used to stop African Americans from registering to vote. 85. What did Martin Luther King, Jr. do?*  fought for civil rights  worked for equality for all Americans Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist minister and civil rights leader. He worked hard to make America a more fair, tolerant, and equal nation. He was the main leader of the civil rights movement of the 1950s and 1960s. Because of this movement, civil rights laws were passed to protect voting rights and end racial segregation. King believed in the ideals of the Declaration of Independence—that every citizen deserves America’s promise of equality and justice. In 1963, King delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech, which imagines an America in which people of all races exist together equally. He was only 35 when he received the Nobel Peace Prize in 1964 for his civil rights work. King was killed on April 4, 1968. 86. What major event happened on September 11, 2001, in the United States?  Terrorists attacked the United States. On September 11, 2001, four airplanes flying out of U.S. airports were taken over by terrorists from the Al-Qaeda network of Islamic extremists. Two of the planes crashed into the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers in New York City, destroying both buildings. One of the planes crashed into the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia. The fourth plane, originally aimed at Washington, D.C., crashed in a field in Pennsylvania. Almost 3,000 people died in these attacks, most of them civilians. This was the worst attack on American soil in the history of the nation.

American Indian woman and her baby in 1899. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-94927.

87. Name one American Indian tribe in the United States. [USCIS Officers will be supplied with a list of federally recognized American Indian tribes.]  Cherokee  Cheyenne  Navajo  Arawak  Sioux  Shawnee  Chippewa  Mohegan  Choctaw  Huron  Pueblo  Oneida  Apache  Lakota  Iroquois  Crow  Creek  Teton  Blackfeet  Hopi  Seminole  Inuit American Indians lived in North America for thousands of years before the European settlers arrived. Today there are more than 500 federally recognized tribes in the United States. Each tribe has its own social and political system. American Indian cultures are different from one tribe to another, with different languages, beliefs, stories, music, and foods. Earlier in their history, some tribes settled in villages and farmed the land for food. Other tribes moved frequently as they hunted and gathered food and resources. The federal government signed treaties with American Indian tribes to move the tribes to reservations. These reservations are recognized as domestic, dependent nations.

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INTEGRATED CIVICS An understanding of America’s geography, symbols, and holidays is important. They provide background and more meaning to historical events and other landmark moments in U.S. history. The following section offers short lessons on our country’s geography, national symbols, and national holidays. The geography of the United States is unusual because of the size of the country and the fact that it is bordered by two oceans that create natural boundaries to the east and west. Through visual symbols such as our flag and the Statue of Liberty, the values and history of the United States are often expressed. Finally, you will also learn about our national holidays and why we celebrate them. Most of our holidays honor people who have contributed to our history and to the development of our nation. By learning this information, you will develop a deeper understanding of the United States and its geographical boundaries, principles, and freedoms.
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A: Geography 88. Name one of the two longest rivers in the United States.  Missouri (River)  Mississippi (River) The Mississippi River is one of America’s longest rivers. It runs through 10 U.S. states. The Mississippi River was used by American Indians for trade, food, and water before Europeans came to America. It is nicknamed the “Father of Waters.” Today, the Mississippi River is a major shipping route and a source of drinking water for millions of people. The Missouri River is also one of the longest rivers in the United States. The Missouri River is actually longer than the Mississippi River. It starts in Montana and flows into the Mississippi River. In 1673, the French explorers Jolliet and Marquette were the first Europeans to find the Missouri River. It is nicknamed “Big Muddy” because of its high silt content. 89. What ocean is on the West Coast of the United States?  Pacific (Ocean) The Pacific Ocean is on the West Coast of the United States. It is the largest ocean on Earth and covers one-third of the Earth’s surface. The Pacific Ocean is important to the U.S. economy because of its many natural resources such as fish. Europeans first learned about the Pacific Ocean in the 16th century. Spanish

explorer Vasco Núñez de Balboa reached the ocean in 1514 when he crossed the Isthmus of Panama. Later, Ferdinand Magellan sailed across the Pacific as he traveled around the Earth in search of spices. “Pacific” means “peaceful.” Magellan named the Pacific Ocean the “peaceful sea,” because there were no storms on his trip from Spain to the spice world. The U.S. states that border the Pacific Ocean are Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, and Hawaii. 90. What ocean is on the East Coast of the United States?  Atlantic (Ocean) The Atlantic Ocean is on the East Coast of the United States. The ocean was named after the giant Atlas from Greek mythology. It is the second largest ocean in the world. The Atlantic Ocean is a major sea route for ships. It is one of the most frequently traveled oceans in the world. The Atlantic Ocean is also a source of many natural resources. The Atlantic Ocean was formed by the separation of the North American and European continents millions of years ago. The ocean covers about one-fifth of the Earth’s surface. In the middle of the ocean is the Mid-Atlantic Ridge, an immense underwater mountain range that extends the length of the Atlantic and is a source of volcanic activity. The U.S. states that border the Atlantic Ocean are Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Rhode Island, South Carolina, and Virginia.

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

91. Name one U.S. territory.  Puerto Rico  U.S. Virgin Islands  American Samoa  Northern Mariana Islands  Guam There are five major U.S. territories: American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. A U.S. territory is a partially self-governing piece of land under the authority of the U.S. government. U.S. territories are not states, but they do have representation in Congress. Each territory is allowed to send a delegate to the House of Representatives. These representatives may participate in debates, sponsor legislation, and vote in committees, but they cannot participate in the formal votes of the House. The people who live in American Samoa are considered U.S. nationals; the people in the other four territories are U.S. citizens. Citizens of the territories can vote in primary elections for president, but they cannot vote in the general elections for president. 92. Name one state that borders Canada.  Maine  Minnesota  New Hampshire  North Dakota  Vermont  Montana  New York  Idaho  Pennsylvania  Washington  Ohio  Alaska  Michigan The northern border of the United States stretches more than 5,000 miles from Maine in the East to Alaska in the West. There are 13 states on the border with Canada. The Treaty of Paris of 1783 established the official boundary between Canada and the United States after the Revolutionary War. Since that time, there have been land disputes, but they have been resolved through treaties. The International Boundary Commission, which is headed by two commissioners, one American and one Canadian, is responsible for maintaining the boundary.

Old Spanish Bridge in Umatac, Guam. Courtesy of the Office of U.S. Representative Madeleine Z. Bordallo.

93. Name one state that borders Mexico.  California  Arizona  New Mexico  Texas The border between the United States and Mexico is about 1,900 miles long and spans four U.S. states— Arizona, California, New Mexico, and Texas. The United States established the border with Mexico after the Mexican-American War and the Gadsden Purchase in 1853. The Gadsden Purchase helped the United States get the land it needed to expand the southern railroad. The United States bought this land for $10 million. The land bought through the Gadsden Purchase is now part of the states of Arizona and New Mexico. The U.S. border with Mexico is one of the busiest international borders in the world. 94. What is the capital of the United States?*  Washington, D.C. When the Constitution established our nation in 1789, the capital of the United States was in New York City. Congress soon began discussing the location of a permanent capital city. In Congress, representatives of northern states argued with representatives of southern states. Each side wanted the capital to be in its own region. As part of the Compromise of 1790, the capital would be located in the South. In return, the North did not have to pay the debt it owed from the Revolutionary War. George Washington

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chose a location for the capital along the Potomac River between Maryland and Virginia. As part of the compromise, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, became the temporary new location for the capital. In 1800, after 10 years, the capital was moved to its current location of Washington, D.C. 95. Where is the Statue of Liberty?*  New York (Harbor)  Liberty Island [Also acceptable are New Jersey, near New York City, and on the Hudson (River).] The Statue of Liberty is on Liberty Island, a 12-acre island in the New York harbor. France gave the statue to the United States as a gift of friendship. French artist Frederic-Auguste Bartholdi made the statue. It shows a woman escaping the chains of tyranny and holding a torch symbolizing liberty. The Statue of Liberty was dedicated on October 28, 1886, 110 years after the signing of the Declaration of Independence. President Grover Cleveland accepted the gift for the American people. The Statue of Liberty is a well-known symbol of the United States and of freedom and democracy. The Statue of Liberty became a symbol of immigration because it was located next to Ellis Island, which was the first entry point for many immigrants during the great waves of immigration. The Statue of Liberty was the first thing new immigrants saw as they approached New York harbor. B: Symbols 96.	Why	does	the	flag	have	13	stripes?  because there were 13 original colonies  because the stripes represent the original colonies There are 13 stripes on the flag because there were 13 original colonies. We call the American flag “the Stars and Stripes.” For 18 years after the United States became an independent country, the flag had only 13 stripes. In 1794, Kentucky and Vermont joined the United States, and two stripes were added to the flag. In 1818, Congress decided that the number of stripes on the flag should always be 13. This would honor the original states that were colonies of Great Britain before America’s independence.

97.	Why	does	the	flag	have	50	stars?*  because there is one star for each state  because each star represents a state  because there are 50 states Each star on the flag represents a state. This is why the number of stars has changed over the years from 13 to 50. The number of stars reached 50 in 1959, when Hawaii joined the United States as the 50th state. In 1777, the Second Continental Congress passed the first Flag Act, stating, “Resolved, That the flag of the United States be made of thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation.” 98. What is the name of the national anthem?  The Star-Spangled Banner During the War of 1812, British soldiers invaded the United States. On the night of September 13, 1814, British warships bombed Fort McHenry. This fort protected the city of Baltimore, Maryland. An American named Francis Scott Key watched the bombing and thought that the fort would fall. As the sun rose the next morning, Key looked toward the fort. He saw that the flag above the fort was still flying. This let him know that the British had not defeated the Americans. Key immediately wrote the words to a poem he called the “Defence of Fort M’Henry.” The words of the poem became “The Star-Spangled Banner.” Congress passed a law in 1931 naming “The Star-Spangled Banner” the official national anthem. Here are the words to the first verse of the national anthem: The	Star-Spangled	Banner Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light, What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming? Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight; O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming. And the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air, Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. Oh, say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

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*If you are 65 or older and have been a legal permanent resident of the United States for 20 or more years, you may study just the questions marked with an asterisk.

CiviCs TesT

C: Holidays 99. When do we celebrate Independence Day?*  July 4 In the United States, we celebrate Independence Day on July 4 to mark the anniversary of the adoption of the Declaration of Independence. After signing the Declaration of Independence, John Adams wrote to his wife, “I am apt to believe that it will be celebrated, by succeeding Generations, as the great anniversary Festival.” The Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, explained why the colonies had decided to separate from Great Britain. Americans celebrate the Fourth of July as the birthday of America, with parades, fireworks, patriotic songs, and readings of the Declaration of Independence. 100. Name two national U.S. holidays.  New Year’s Day  Martin Luther King, Jr. Day  Presidents’ Day  Memorial Day  Independence Day  Labor Day  Columbus Day  Veterans Day  Thanksgiving  Christmas

In “The Star-Spangled Banner,” by Percy Moran, Francis Scott Key reaches toward the flag flying over Fort McHenry. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZC4-6200.

Many Americans celebrate national or federal holidays. These holidays often honor people or events in our American heritage. These holidays are “national” in a legal sense only for federal institutions and in the District of Columbia. Typically, federal offices are closed on these holidays. Each state can decide whether or not to celebrate the holiday. Businesses, schools, and commercial establishments may choose whether or not to close on these days. Since 1971, federal holidays are observed on Mondays except for New Year’s Day, Independence Day, Veterans Day, Thanksgiving, and Christmas.



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Learn abouT The uniTed sTaTes

English Test
There are three components of the English test: speaking, reading, and writing. According to the law, an applicant must demonstrate: “an understanding of the English language, including an ability to read, write, and speak...simple words and phrases...in ordinary usage in the English language....” This means that to be eligible for naturalization, you must be able to read, write, and speak basic English. You are required to pass each of the three components of the English test with the exception of applicants who qualify as: 50 years of age or older AND a lawful permanent resident for at least 20 years at the time of filing the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400; 55 years of age or older AND a lawful permanent resident for at least 15 years at the time of filing the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400; or, any person who is unable to demonstrate an understanding of English because of a medically determinable physical and/or medical impairment as determined by an approved Medical Certification for Disability Exceptions, Form N-648. Speaking Portion Your ability to speak English will be determined by the USCIS Officer from your answers to questions normally asked during the eligibility interview on the Application for Naturalization, Form N-400. Reading Portion Each reading test administered to you will contain no more than three (3) sentences. You must read one (1) out of three (3) sentences correctly to demonstrate an ability to read in English. To help you prepare, USCIS released a reading vocabulary list found below containing all the words found in the English reading portion of the new naturalization test. The content focuses on civics and history topics. PEOPLE  Abraham Lincoln  George Washington CIVICS  American flag  Bill of Rights  capital  citizen  city  Congress  country  Father of Our Country  government  President  right  Senators  state/states  White House PLACES  America  United States  U.S. HOLIDAYS  Presidents’ Day  Memorial Day  Flag Day  Independence Day  Labor Day  Columbus Day  Thanksgiving QUESTION WORDS  How  What  When  Where  Who  Why VERBS  can  come  do/does  elects  have/has  is/are/was/be  lives/lived  meet  name  pay  vote  want OTHER (FUNCTION)  a  for  here  in  of  on  the  to  we OTHER (CONTENT)  colors  dollar bill  first  largest  many  most  north  one  people  second  south

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

engLish TesT

Writing Portion Each writing test administered to you will contain no more than three (3) sentences. You must write one (1) out of three (3) sentences correctly in order to demonstrate an ability to write in English. To help you prepare, USCIS released a writing vocabulary list found below containing all the words found in the English writing portion of the new naturalization test. The content focuses on civics and history topics. PEOPLE  Adams  Lincoln  Washington CIVICS  American Indians  capital  citizens  Civil War  Congress  Father of Our Country  flag  free  freedom of speech  President  right  Senators  state/states  White House PLACES  Alaska  California  Canada  Delaware  Mexico  New York City  United States  Washington  Washington, D.C. MONTHS  February  May  June  July  September  October  November HOLIDAYS  Presidents’ Day  Memorial Day  Flag Day  Independence Day  Labor Day  Columbus Day  Thanksgiving VERBS  can  come  elect  have/has  is/was/be  lives/lived  meets  pay  vote  want OTHER (FUNCTION)  and  during  for  here  in  of  on  the  to  we OTHER (CONTENT)  blue  dollar bill  fifty/50  first  largest  most  north  one  one hundred/100  people  red  second  south  taxes  white

To find this and other educational materials for permanent residents, please visit http://www.uscis.gov. For more information on the U.S. naturalization test, please visit http://www.uscis.gov/citizenshiptest. Note: Some of the content in this publication may change due to elections and appointments. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will make every effort to update this publication in a timely manner. As of February 2009, all information in this publication is current.



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An audio CD of the 100 civics (history and government) questions and answers for the new naturalization test accompanies this booklet. Use this CD as you prepare for the civics portion of the new naturalization test. After you become familiar with the content, shuffle or randomly play the questions in your CD player or computer to help test your knowledge. The audio CD has 99 individual tracks. Questions 1-98 are included consecutively in tracks 1-98 and track 99 contains the questions and answers for both question 99 and 100.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would like to acknowledge the National Endowment for the Humanities for their assistance in the development of this product. For more information on the Endowment, please visit http://www.neh.gov.

www.uscis.gov

USCIS Civics Flash Cards for the Old Naturalization Test

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

Question

1 What are the colors of our flag? Red, white, and blue
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

2 What do the stars on the flag mean? One for each state
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

3 How many stars are there on our flag? There are 50 stars on our flag.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

4 What color are the stars on our flag? The stars on our flag are white.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

5 How many stripes are there on our flag? There are 13 stripes on our flag.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

New Hampshire

6 What do the stripes on the flag represent?

New York

Massachusetts

Rhode Island Connecticut Pennsylvania New Jersey Delaware Maryland

Virginia

The first 13 states

North Carolina

South Carolina

USCIS Civics Flash Cards
Georgia

Question

7 What colors are the stripes on the flag? The stripes on the flag are red and white.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Washington

Question

Montana Oregon Idaho

North Dakota South Dakota

Minnesota Michigan Wisconsin Indiana

Vermont

Maine

8 How many states are there in the Union (the United States)?
Nevada California

New York

Wyoming Iowa Nebraska Utah Colorado Kansas Missouri Kentucky Tennessee Arizona New Mexico Oklahoma Arkansas Georgia Alabama Texas North Carolina Virginia Illinois Ohio Pennsylvania

New Hampshire Massachusetts Rhode Island Connecticut New Jersey Delaware Maryland West Virginia

South Carolina

Alaska Hawaii

Florida Louisiana Mississippi

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

50 states

Question

9 What do we celebrate on the 4th of July? Independence Day

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

SCOTLAND

Question

10 Independence Day celebrates independence from whom?
WALES ENGLAND

GREAT BRITAIN

Independence from Great Britain

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

SCOTLAND

Question

11 What country did we fight during the Revolutionary War?
WALES ENGLAND

GREAT BRITAIN

We fought Great Britain in the Revolutionary War.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

12 Who was the first president of the United States? George Washington

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

13 Who is the President of the United States today? Barack Obama Barack Obama

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

14 Who is the Vice President of the United States today? Joe Biden

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

15 Who elects the President of the United States? The Electoral College
The Electoral College is not a place. It is a process that began as part of the original design of the U.S. Constitution. The Electoral College was established as a compromise between election of the President by Congress and election by popular vote. The people of the United States vote for the electors who then vote for the President.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

16 Who becomes President if the President dies? The Vice President

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

17 What is the Constitution? The supreme law of the land
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

18 What do we call changes to the Constitution? Amendments
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

19 How many changes, or amendments, are there to the Constitution? Twenty-seven amendments
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

20 What are the three branches of our government? Executive, Judicial, and Legislative
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

21 What is the legislative branch of our Government? Congress

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

22 What makes up Congress? The Senate and the House of Representatives
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

23 Who makes the Federal laws in the United States? Congress

USCIS Civics Flash

Question

24 Who elects Congress? The citizens of the United States

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

25 How many Senators are there in Congress?

There are 100 Senators in Congress, 2 from each state.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

26 For how long do we elect each Senator? 6 years
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

27 Name two Senators from your state.

The answer to this question depends on where you live. For a complete list of United States Senators and the states they represent, go to http://www.senate.gov.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

28 How many voting members are in the House of Representatives? There are 435 voting members in the House of Representatives.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

29 For how long do we elect each member of the House of Representatives? For 2 years

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

30 Who is the head of the Executive Branch of the U.S. Government? The President

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

31 For how long is the President elected? The President is elected for 4 years.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

32 What is the highest part of the Judiciary Branch of our Government? The Supreme Court

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

33 What are the duties of the Supreme Court? To interpret and explain the laws
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

34 What is the supreme law of the United States? The Constitution
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

35 What is the Bill of Rights?

The first 10 amendments to the Constitution

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

36 What is the capital of the state you live in?

The answer to this question depends on the state where you reside. To learn the capital of your state, go to http:// www.firstgov.gov and select the state government link.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

37 Who is the current Governor of the state you live in?

The answer to this question depends on where you live. To learn the name of the Governor of your state, go to http://www.firstgov.gov and select the state government link.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

38 Who becomes President if both the President and Vice President die? The Speaker of the House
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

39 Who is Chief Justice of the Supreme Court? John G. Roberts, Jr.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

New Hampshire

40 What were the original 13 states?

New York

Massachusetts

Rhode Island Connecticut Pennsylvania New Jersey Delaware Maryland

Virginia

North Carolina

South Carolina

USCIS Civics Flash Cards
Georgia

Virginia, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New Hampshire, North Carolina, South Carolina, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and Georgia

Question

41 Who said, “Give me liberty or give me death”? Patrick Henry

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

42 Name some countries that were our enemies during World War II. Germany, Italy, and Japan

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

43 What was the 49th state added to our Union (the United States)?
ALASKA

Alaska

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

44 How many full terms can a President serve?

Two full terms

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

45 Who was Martin Luther King, Jr.? A civil rights leader

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

46 What are some of the requirements to be eligible to become President?

A candidate for President must •be a native-born, not naturalized, citizen, •be at least 35 years old, and •have lived in the U.S. for at least 14 years.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Washington

Question

Montana Oregon Idaho

North Dakota South Dakota

Minnesota Michigan Wisconsin Indiana

Vermont

Maine

47 Why are there 100 Senators in the United States Senate?
Nevada California

New York

Wyoming Iowa Nebraska Utah Colorado Kansas Missouri Kentucky Tennessee Arizona New Mexico Oklahoma Arkansas Georgia Alabama Texas North Carolina Virginia Illinois Ohio Pennsylvania

New Hampshire Massachusetts Rhode Island Connecticut New Jersey Delaware Maryland West Virginia

South Carolina

Alaska Hawaii

Florida Louisiana Mississippi

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Each state elects 2 senators.

Question

48 Who nominates judges for the Supreme Court?

The President nominates judges for the Supreme Court.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

49 How many Supreme Court Justices are there? There are 9 Supreme Court Justices.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

50 Why did the Pilgrims come to America? To gain religious freedom

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

51 What is the executive of a state government called? The Governor

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

52 What is the head executive of a city government called? The Mayor
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

53 What holiday was celebrated for the first time by American colonists? Thanksgiving
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

54 Who was the main writer of the Declaration of Independence? Thomas Jefferson

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

55 When was the Declaration of Independence adopted? July 4, 1776
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

56 What are some of the basic beliefs of the Declaration of Independence? That all men are created equal and have the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

57 What is the national anthem of the United States? The Star-Spangled Banner
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

58 Who wrote The Star-Spangled Banner? Francis Scott Key

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

59 What is the minimum voting age in the United States? 18 is the minimum voting age.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

60 Who signs bills into law? The President
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

61 What is the highest court in the United States? The Supreme Court
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

62 Who was President during the Civil War? Abraham Lincoln
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

63 What did the Emancipation Proclamation do?

The Emancipation Proclamation freed the slaves.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

64 What special group advises the President? The Cabinet advises the President.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

65 Which President is called the “Father of our Country”? George Washington

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

66 Which President was the first Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Army and Navy? George Washington

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

67 What was the 50th state to be added to our Union (the United States)?
HAWAII

Hawaii

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

68 Who helped the Pilgrims in America?

The American Indians/ Native Americans

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

69 What is the name of the ship that brought the Pilgrims to America? The Mayflower

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

70

What were the 13 original states of the United States called before they were states? Colonies

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

71 What group has the power to declare war? Congress has the power to declare war.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

72 Name the amendments that guarantee or address voting rights. The 15th, 19th, 24th, and 26th amendments
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

73 In what year was the Constitution written?

The Constitution was written in 1787.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

74 What are the first 10 amendments to the Constitution called? The Bill of Rights

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

75

Whose rights are guaranteed by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights?

All people living in the United States

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

76 What is the introduction to the Constitution called? The Preamble
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

77 Who meets in the U.S. Capitol building? Congress

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

78 What is the name of the President’s official home? The White House
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

79 Where is the White House located? Washington, DC

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

80 Name one right or freedom guaranteed by the first amendment. The rights of freedom of religion, of speech, of the press, of assembly, and to petition the Government

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

81 Who is Commander-in-Chief of the United States military? The President

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

82 In what month do we vote for the President? November

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

83 In what month is the new President inaugurated? January

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

84 How many times may a Senator or Congressman be re-elected? There is no limit.

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

85 What are the two major political parties in the United States today? The Democratic and Republican parties
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

86 What is the executive branch of our government?

The President, the Cabinet, and departments under the cabinet members

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

87 Where does freedom of speech come from? The Bill of Rights
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

88

What U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services form is used to apply for naturalized citizenship?

Form N-400 (Application for Naturalization)

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

89 What kind of government does the United States have?
A Republic

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

90 Name one of the purposes of the United Nations. For countries to discuss and try to resolve world problems or to provide economic aid to many countries

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

91 Name one benefit of being a citizen of the United States.
To obtain Federal Government jobs, to travel with a U.S. passport, or to petition for close relatives to come to the United States to live

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

92 Can the Constitution be changed? Yes, the Constitution can be changed.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

93 What is the most important right granted to United States citizens? The right to vote

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

94 What is the White House? The President’s official home

USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

95 What is the United States Capitol? The place where Congress meets
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

Question

96 How many branches are there in the United States government? There are 3 branches.
USCIS Civics Flash Cards

“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, 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 Amerca.”

ECM News and ECMNooz YouTube bring more in depth documentation to help with history and citizenship in this anthology. The Citizens Almanac is followed by copies of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States of America.

T Citizen’s Almanac
M-76 (rev. 07/08)

I

n 1876, to commemorate 100 years of independence from Great Britain, Archibald M. Willard presented his painting, Spirit of ‘76, at the U.S. Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, PA. The painting depicts three generations of Americans fighting for their new nation’s freedom, one of whom is marching along though slightly wounded in battle. Willard’s powerful portrayal of the strength and determination of the American people in the face of overwhelming odds inspired millions. The painting quickly became one of the most popular patriotic images in American history. This depiction of courage and character still resonates today as the Spirit of ‘76 lives on in our newest Americans. “Spirit of ‘76” (1876) by Archibald M. Willard.

Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 148-GW-1209

T Citizen’s Almanac
Fundamental documents, symbols, and anthems oF the united states

U.S. GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL EDITION NOTICE

Use of ISBN
This is the Official U.S. Government edition of this publication and is herein identified to certify its authenticity. Use of the ISBN 978-0-16-078003-5 is for U.S. Government Printing Office Official Editions only. The Superintendent of Documents of the U.S. Government Printing Office requests that any reprinted edition clearly be labeled as a copy of the authentic work with a new ISBN. The information presented in The Citizen’s Almanac is considered public information and may be distributed or copied without alteration unless otherwise specified. The citation should be: U.S. Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Office of Citizenship, The Citizen’s Almanac, Washington, DC, 2007. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has purchased the right to use many of the images in The Citizen’s Almanac. USCIS is licensed to use these images on a non-exclusive and non-transferable basis. All other rights to the images, including without limitation and copyright, are retained by the owner of the images. These images are not in the public domain and may not be used except as they appear as part of this publication.

0

For sale by the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office Internet: bookstore.gpo.gov Phone: toll free (866) 512-1800; DC area (202) 512-1800 Fax: (202) 512-2104 Mail: Stop IDCC, Washington, DC 20402-0001
I S B N 978-0-16-078003-5

ii

Table of Contents
Message FroM the Director  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . v citizenship in aMerica: rights anD responsibilities oF U .s . citizens  .  .  . 1
Rights of a Citizen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Responsibilities of a Citizen . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5

patriotic antheMs anD syMbols oF the UniteD states  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 9
The Star-Spangled Banner (1814) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 America the Beautiful (1893) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13 God Bless America (1938) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 I Hear America Singing (1860) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 Concord Hymn (1837) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 The New Colossus (1883) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 Flag of the United States of America . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Pledge of Allegiance . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 Great Seal of the United States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 Motto of the United States . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

presiDential anD historical speeches  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 27
Farewell Address—George Washington (1796) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 First Inaugural Address—Abraham Lincoln (1861) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Gettysburg Address—Abraham Lincoln (1863) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33 The Four Freedoms—Franklin D. Roosevelt (1941) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35 Inaugural Address—John F. Kennedy (1961) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 38 I Have a Dream—Martin Luther King, Jr. (1963) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41 Remarks at the Brandenburg Gate—Ronald Reagan (1987) . . . . . . . . 43

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FUnDaMental DocUMents oF aMerican DeMocracy  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 45
The Mayflower Compact (1620) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46 The Declaration of Independence (1776) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 The Federalist Papers (1787–1788) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 55 The Constitution of the United States (1787). . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58 The Bill of Rights (1791) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 60 Emancipation Proclamation (1863) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61

lanDMark Decisions oF the U .s . sUpreMe coUrt  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 65
Marbury v. Madison (1803) John Marshall—Delivering the Opinion of the Court . . . . . . . . . . . . . 66 Plessy v. Ferguson (1896) John Marshall Harlan—Delivering the Dissenting Opinion of the Court . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69 West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette (1943) Robert Jackson—Delivering the Opinion of the Court . . . . . . . . . . . . 71 Brown v. Board of Education (1954) Earl Warren—Delivering the Opinion of the Court. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 73

presiDential stateMents on citizenship anD iMMigration  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 75 proMinent Foreign-born aMericans  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 85 acknowleDgeMents  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  . 101

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Message from the Director
toDay yoU are a citizen oF the UniteD states oF aMerica— becoming “a peer of kings” as President Calvin Coolidge once said. This occasion is a defining moment that should not soon be forgotten, for it marks the beginning of a new era in your lifetime as a U.S. citizen.
Naturalized citizens are an important part of our great democracy, bringing a wealth of talent, ability, and character to this Nation. Your fellow citizens recognize the sacrifices you have made to reach this milestone and with open arms we welcome you. The United States offers an abundance of freedom and opportunity for all its citizens and we wish you all the best along the way. As you will read in this booklet, The Citizen’s Almanac, naturalized citizens have played an important role in shaping this country. From Alexander Hamilton to Albert Einstein, foreign-born Americans have contributed to all aspects of society—literature, motion pictures, public service, and athletics, to name just a few. As a citizen of the United States, it is now your turn to add to this great legacy. For more than 200 years, we have been bound by the principles and ideals expressed in our founding documents, but it is up to citizens like you to carry on this legacy for future generations. Upon taking he Oath of Allegiance, you claimed for yourself the Godgiven unalienable rights that the Declaration of Independence sets forth as a natural right to all people. You also made a commitment to this country and were therefore awarded its highest privilege—U.S. citizenship; but great responsibilities accompany this privilege. You now have certain rights and responsibilities that you must exercise in order to

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maintain our system of government. By becoming an active and participatory citizen, you further strengthen the foundation of our Nation. The United States of America is now your country and The Citizen’s Almanac contains information on the history, people, and events that have brought us where we are today as a beacon of hope and freedom to the world. We hope the contents of this booklet will serve as a constant reminder of the important rights and responsibilities you now have as a U.S. citizen. By continuing to learn about your new country, its founding ideals, achievements, and history, you will enjoy the fruits of responsible citizenship for years to come. Through your efforts, the freedom and liberty of future generations will be preserved and ensured. May you find fulfillment and success in all your endeavors as a citizen of this great Nation. Congratulations and welcome. May the United States of America provide you peace, opportunity, and security.

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Citizenship in America:
Rights & Responsibilities of U.S. Citizens

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ll people in the United States have the basic freedoms and protections outlined in our founding documents, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. For more than 200 years, we have been bound by the ideals expressed in these documents. Because of these ideals, our society has prospered. The U.S. government, as established in the Constitution, protects the rights of each individual, without

“ We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.”
— Declaration of Independence

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regard to background, culture, or religion. To keep our system of representative democracy and individual freedom, you should strive to become an active participant in American civic life. When you took the Oath of Allegiance, you promised your loyalty and allegiance to the United States of America. You now have other rights and responsibilities only given to United States citizens. These include the right to vote in federal elections and the ability to serve on a jury. Citizenship is a privilege that offers you the extraordinary opportunity to be a part of the governing process. The strength of the United States is in the will of its citizens. Former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said, “The only title in our democracy superior to that of President [is] the title of citizen.” In the United States, the power of government comes directly from people like you. To protect freedom and liberty, U.S. citizens must participate in the democratic process and in their communities. The following is a

Adopted son of a U.S. serviceman becomes a U.S. citizen in U.S. District Court, Madison, WI, May 28, 1971.
Photo taken by L. Roger Turner, Wisconsin State Journal, courtesy of the USCIS Historical Library

Early 20th century immigrants.
Courtesy of the USCIS Historical Library

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list of some of the most important rights and responsibilities that all citizens should exercise and respect. We encourage you to read the Constitution to learn more about all of the rights and responsibilities of United States citizenship.

Rights of a Citizen
H Freedom to express yourself. “Freedom of expression” includes several individual rights. It includes freedom of speech, freedom to peaceably assemble, and the freedom to petition the government for a redress of grievances. In a representative democracy, individual beliefs and opinions are important to our national dialogue and necessary to maintain a responsible citizenry. Americans can speak and act as they wish as long as it does not endanger others or obstruct another’s freedom of expression in the process. H Freedom to worship as you wish. In the United States, the freedom to hold any religious belief, or none at all, is considered a basic, or unalienable right. The government cannot violate this right. Religious intolerance is unacceptable in a society where everyone has 3

In 1963, nearly 250,000 people gathered in Washington, DC, to speak out against segregation and petition for equal rights for all Americans.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-U9-10363-5

individual freedom. In cases where religious practices hurt the common good or endanger the health of others, the Supreme Court has imposed minor limitations on the way some religious practices are performed. H Right to a prompt, fair trial by jury. People accused of a crime have the right to a speedy and fair trial by a jury of peers. In a free society, those accused of a crime are assumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. The American system of justice treats all people fairly, ensuring the rights of the individual are maintained. H Right to keep and bear arms. The Constitution protects the rights of individuals to have firearms for personal defense. This privilege is subject to reasonable restrictions designed to prevent unfit persons, or those with the intent to criminally misuse guns or other firearms, from obtaining such items. H Right to vote in elections for public officials. By voting in federal, state, and local elections, citizens choose their government leaders. The right to vote is one of the most important liberties granted to American citizens. It is the foundation of a free society. H Right to apply for federal employment. Public service is a worthy endeavor and can lead to an extremely rewarding career working for the American people. Many federal government jobs require applicants to have U.S. citizenship. As a U.S. citizen, you can apply for federal employment within a government agency or department. H Right to run for elected office. U.S. citizenship is required for many elected offices in this country. Naturalized U.S. citizens can run for any elected office they choose with the exception of President and Vice President of the United States, which require candidates to be native-born citizens. H Freedom to pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” As a society based on individual freedom, it is the inherent right of all Americans to pursue “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” The United States is a land of opportunity. People are able to choose their 4

own path in life based on personal goals and objectives. Americans can make their own decisions and pursue their own interests as long as it does not interfere with the rights of others.

Responsibilities of a Citizen
H Support and defend the Constitution against all enemies, foreign and domestic. The Constitution establishes the U.S. system of representative democracy and outlines the inherent principles of freedom, liberty, and opportunity to which all citizens are entitled. The continuity of this Nation’s unique freedoms depends on the support of its citizens. When the Constitution and its ideals are challenged, citizens must defend these principles against all adversaries.

Until 1920, women were not allowed to vote in political elections.This image shows two women, known as suffragettes, petitioning for the right to vote (ca. 1917) in New York State.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-53202

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H Stay informed of the issues affecting your community. Before casting your vote in an election, be sure to gain information about the issues and candidates running for office. Staying informed allows citizens the opportunity to keep the candidates and laws responsive to the needs of the local community. H Participate in the democratic process.
A citizen casts his vote in Barnesville, MD, 1944.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USW3-055965-D

Voting in federal, state, and local elections is the most important responsibility of any citizen. Voting ensures that our system of government is maintained and individual voices are clearly heard by elected officials. H Respect and obey federal, state, and local laws. Laws are rules of conduct that are established by an authority and followed by the community to maintain order in a free society. Every person living in the United States must follow laws established through federal, state, and local authorities. H Respect the rights, beliefs, and opinions of others. Though the United States is a nation of diverse backgrounds and cultures, our common civic values unite us as one nation. Tolerance, through courtesy and respect for the beliefs and opinions of others, is the hallmark of a civilized society and ensures the continuity of liberty and freedom for future generations.

Red Cross volunteer poster, 1917.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZC4-10138

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H Participate in your local community. Being a responsible member of one’s local community is important to the success of representative democracy. Community engagement through volunteerism, participation in town hall meetings and public hearings, joining a local parent-teacher association, and running for public office are ways individuals can actively contribute to the well-being of the community. H Pay income and other taxes honestly, and on time, to federal, state, and local authorities. Taxes pay for government services for the people of the United States. Some of these services include: educating children and adults, keeping our country safe and secure, and providing medical services to the elderly and less fortunate. Paying taxes on time and in full ensures that these services continue for all Americans. H Serve on a jury when called upon. Serving on a jury is a very important service to your community. In the United States, the Constitution guarantees that all persons accused of a crime have the right to a “speedy and public trial by an impartial jury.” Jury service gives you the opportunity to participate in the vital task of achieving just, fair results in matters that come before the court.
During World War I, 300 soldiers from Camp Upton in New York take the Oath of Allegiance as a result of a law granting U.S. citizenship to immigrants in the Armed Forces.
Courtesy of the USCIS Historical Library

Volunteers tutoring children at the South Baton Rouge Community Development Association in Louisiana, 1986.
Courtesy of the Corporation for National and Community Service

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H Defend the country if the need should arise. The Armed Forces of the United States, the military, is currently an all-volunteer force. However, should the need arise in time of war, it is important that all citizens join together and assist the Nation where they are able. This support could include defending the Nation through military, noncombatant, or civilian service.

A World War II B-24 bomber crew at their base in Nadzab, New Guinea, following a mission in 1944.
Courtesy of the Maloney family

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Patriotic Anthems & Symbols
of the United States
eginning early in our Nation’s history, citizens have used songs, poems, and symbols to express the ideals and values of the United States. From solemn oaths, such as the Pledge of Allegiance and the Oath of Allegiance, which one must take to become a citizen, to the more informal tradition of singing “The Star-Spangled Banner” before sporting events, spoken expressions have always been an important part of American civic life. As you will learn in this section, these songs and poems often came from a writer’s personal interpretation of America’s ideals, as with the story of Emma Lazarus and “The New Colossus.”

B

The values and history of the United States are also expressed through visual symbols, such as the Great Seal of the United States and the Flag of the United States of America. Around the world, these two emblems are used to symbolize our solidarity as a nation. As a U.S. citizen, you can take pride in these symbols and the fact that they represent you and your country. The following section will introduce you to the history and meaning behind some of our most important patriotic anthems and symbols.



T Star-Spangled Banner (1814)
“
he Star-Spangled Banner” is the national anthem of the United States. It was written by Francis Scott Key after a critical battle in the War of

T

by Francis Scott Key

1812. Key, a lawyer and amateur poet, had been sent to Baltimore, Maryland, to secure the release of Dr. William Beanes, an American taken prisoner by the British. Boarding a British ship for the negotiations, Key was treated with respect by the British officers who agreed to release Dr. Beanes. Although the mission was completed, the British were about to attack Fort McHenry, the American fort guarding Baltimore, and so they did not allow the Americans to return to shore. For twenty-five hours, British

“The Star-Spangled Banner,” the flag that inspired the national anthem.
Courtesy of the National Museum of American History, Smithsonian Institution

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In “The Star Spangled Banner,” a painting by Percy Moran, Francis Scott Key reaches out towards the flag flying over Fort McHenry. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-1764

gunboats shelled Fort McHenry. The Americans withstood the attack, and on the morning of September 14, 1814, Key peered through clearing smoke to see an enormous American flag waving proudly above the fort. Key was so inspired by this sight of the

American flag that he began a poem to commemorate the occasion. He wrote the poem to be sung to the popular British song, “To Anacreon in Heaven.” The significance and popularity of the song spread across the

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United States. In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson ordered that the song be played at military and naval occasions. In 1931,

“The Star-Spangled Banner” became the official national anthem of the United States.

The Star-Spangled Banner
Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light, What so proudly we hailed at the twilight’s last gleaming? Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight; O’er the ramparts we watched, were so gallantly streaming. And the rockets red glare, the bombs bursting in air, Gave proof through the night that our flag was still there. Oh, say, does that star-spangled banner yet wave O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

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America the Beautiful
“

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merica the Beautiful” was written in 1893 by Katharine Lee Bates, a professor of English literature at Wellesley College in Massachusetts. Bates wrote the lyrics while on a trip to Colorado Springs, Colorado. Describing the extraordinary view at the top of Pike’s Peak she said, “It was then and there, as I was looking out over the sea-like expanse of fertile country spreading away so far under those ample skies, that the opening lines of the hymn floated into my mind.” On July 4, 1895, “America the Beautiful” first appeared in print in the Congregationalist, a weekly journal. A few months later, the lyrics were set to music by Silas G. Pratt. Bates

by Katharine Lee Bates (183)
revised the lyrics in 1904 after receiving many requests to use the song in publications and special services. In 1913, Bates made an additional change to the wording of the third verse, creating the version we know today. For several years, “America the Beautiful” was sung to just about any popular or folk tune that would fit with the lyrics. In 1926, the National Federation of Music Clubs held a contest to put the

The view from Pike’s Peak, which inspired the writing of “America the Beautiful.”
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-DIG-stereo-1s01262

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poem to music, but failed to select a winner. Today, “America the

Beautiful” is sung to Samuel A. Ward’s 1882 melody “Materna.”

America the Beautiful
O beautiful for spacious skies, For amber waves of grain, For purple mountain majesties Above the fruited plain. America! America! God shed His grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea. O beautiful for pilgrim feet, Whose stern impassion’d stress A thoroughfare for freedom beat Across the wilderness. America! America! God mend thine ev’ry flaw, Confirm thy soul in self-control, Thy liberty in law. O beautiful for heroes prov’d In liberating strife, Who more than self their country loved, And mercy more than life. America! America! May God thy gold refine Till all success be nobleness, And ev’ry gain divine. O beautiful for patriot dream That sees beyond the years. Thine alabaster cities gleam, Undimmed by human tears. America! America! God shed his grace on thee, And crown thy good with brotherhood From sea to shining sea. 14

God Bless America

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rving Berlin, a Russian immigrant who became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1918, wrote the song “God Bless America” while serving in the U.S. Army. Originally composed for a musical revue, Berlin made a few slight alterations to the lyrics and introduced the song in 1938. Singer Kate Smith sang the song for the first time to a national audience during her radio broadcast on November 11, 1938, in honor of Armistice Day (now Veterans Day). The song became popular almost immediately, and soon after its introduction, Berlin

by Irving Berlin (1938)

Boy and Girl Scouts march in an Armistice Day parade, 1940. Courtesy of the LOC, LC-USF33-020711-M1

established the God Bless America Fund with which he dedicated the royalties from the song to the Boy and Girl Scouts of America. “God Bless America” is recognized today as America’s unofficial national anthem.

God Bless America
While the storm clouds gather far across the sea, Let us swear allegiance to a land that’s free, Let us all be grateful for a land so fair, As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer. God Bless America. Land that I love. Stand beside her, and guide her Thru the night with a light from above. From the mountains, to the prairies, To the oceans, white with foam God Bless America. My home sweet home. 15

I Hear America Singing

W

From Leaves of Grass (1860 Edition) by Walt Whitman
Island, New York. He taught until 1841 when he decided to begin a full-time career in journalism. Whitman established the LongIslander, a weekly newspaper in New York, and often edited other newspapers in the surrounding area. He also spent time in New Orleans, Louisiana, and Washington, DC. By traveling to different cities in the United States, Whitman was exposed to how Americans lived in a variety of places. These experiences provided inspiration for some of Whitman’s famous poems about his fellow countrymen, including “I Hear America Singing.” This poem was included in Whitman’s

alt Whitman, who lived from 1819 to 1892, is one of the most influential and beloved of American poets. As a young man, Whitman worked as a teacher in one-room schools on Long

Walt Whitman.

Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-DIG-ppmsca-07549

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most cherished work, the poetry collection, Leaves of Grass. Throughout his life, Whitman produced several editions of Leaves of Grass, a varied collection that began with only twelve poems in the 1855 first edition and contained

nearly four hundred poems by the time the final edition was published in 1891. “I Hear America Singing,” a celebration of the American people, was added to the collection in 1860.

I Hear America Singing
I hear America singing, the varied carols I hear, Those of mechanics, each one singing his as it should be blithe and strong, The carpenter singing his as he measures his plank or beam, The mason singing his as he makes ready for work, or leaves off work, The boatman singing what belongs to him in his boat, the deckhand singing on the steamboat deck, The shoemaker singing as he sits on his bench, the hatter singing as he stands, The wood-cutter’s song, the ploughboy’s on his way in the morning, or at noon intermission or at sundown, The delicious singing of the mother, or of the young wife at work, or of the girl sewing or washing, Each singing what belongs to him or her and to none else, The day what belongs to the day—at night the party of young fellows, robust, friendly, Singing with open mouths their strong melodious songs.

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Concord Hymn (1837)

R

alph Waldo Emerson was a celebrated American author, poet, philosopher, and public speaker. He became the leader of a famous intellectual movement known as transcendentalism. Emerson had strong ties to the beginning of America’s fight for independence. His grandfather was present at the opening battle of the American Revolution, the Battle of Lexington and Concord, in Massachusetts on April 19, 1775. His family home was also located next to the battlefield site.

by Ralph Waldo Emerson

The Obelisk at the battlefield in Concord, MA (ca.1900).
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-D4-11872

“Concord Hymn” was written originally as a song for the dedication of the Obelisk, a monument commemorating the valiant effort of those who fought in the Battle of Lexington and Concord. The gunshot which began this battle is considered the beginning of America’s fight for independence, and is referred to by Emerson as “the shot heard round the world.” This phrase has since become famous and is often used in discussions of the American Revolution.

Ralph Waldo Emerson.

Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ61-279

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Concord Hymn
By the rude bridge that arched the flood, Their flag to April’s breeze unfurled, Here once the embattled farmers stood, And fired the shot heard round the world. The foe long since in silence slept; Alike the conqueror silent sleeps; And Time the ruined bridge has swept Down the dark stream which seaward creeps. On this green bank, by this soft stream, We set to-day a votive stone; That memory may their deed redeem, When, like our sires, our sons are gone. Spirit, that made those heroes dare To die, and leave their children free, Bid Time and Nature gently spare The shaft we raise to them and thee.

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TNew Colossus (1883)

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by Emma Lazarus

s part of an auction held in 1883 to raise funds for a pedestal to be placed beneath the Statue of Liberty, which was a gift to America from France as part of the centennial celebration of 1876, Emma Lazarus wrote “The New Colossus.” Her poem spoke to the millions of immigrants who came to America in search of freedom and opportunity. She saw the new statue as a symbol of hope and an inspiration to the world. In 1902, the poem was engraved on a bronze plaque at the base of the Statue of Liberty.

Inauguration of the Statue of Liberty in 1886, partly clouded by smoke from a military and naval salute marking President Grover Cleveland’s arrival at the ceremony.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-19869A

The New Colossus
Not like the brazen giant of Greek fame, With conquering limbs astride from land to land; Here at our sea-washed, sunset gates shall stand A mighty woman with a torch, whose flame Is the imprisoned lightning, and her name Mother of Exiles. From her beacon-hand Glows world-wide welcome; her mild eyes command The air-bridged harbor that twin cities frame. “Keep, ancient lands, your storied pomp!” cries she With silent lips. “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free, The wretched refuse of your teeming shore. Send these, the homeless, tempest-tost to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door!” 20

United States of America
s America fought for its independence from Great Britain, it soon became evident that the new nation needed a flag of its own to identify American forts and ships.

Flag of the

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come a visible symbol of change and established that the American flag would have one star for every state. The design of the American flag has changed twenty-seven times, and since 1959 it has had fifty stars and thirteen stripes. The American flag is called the “Star-Spangled Banner,” the “Stars and Stripes,” the “Red, White, and Blue,” and

The flag that was authorized by Congress on June 14, 1777.

A design of thirteen alternating red and white stripes and thirteen stars in a blue field was accepted by the Continental Congress on June 14, 1777. These stars and stripes honored the thirteen states that had joined together to form the United States of America. As the United States expanded, however, more states were added to the Union. To celebrate the Nation’s growth, Congress decided that the flag should be-

The U.S. flag today.

“Old Glory.” To emphasize the importance of the American flag to the Nation and its people, Congress established June 14 of each year as Flag Day. On this day, Americans take special notice of the flag and reflect on its meaning.

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he Pledge of Allegiance was first published on September 8, 1892, in the Youth’s Companion magazine. The original pledge read as follows, “I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.” Children in public schools across the country recited the pledge for the first time on October 12, 1892, as part of official Columbus

Pledge of Allegiance

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Students recite the Pledge of Allegiance in a Washington, DC, classroom (ca. 1899).
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-14693

Citizens of Vale, OR, take off their hats during the Pledge of Allegiance on July 4, 1941.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USF33-013070-M2

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Day observances to celebrate the 400th anniversary of his discovery of America. In 1942, by an official act, Congress recognized the pledge. The phrase “under God” was added to the pledge by another act of Congress on June 14, 1954. Upon signing the legislation to authorize the addition, President Dwight D. Eisenhower said, “In this way we are reaffirming the transcendence of religious faith in America’s heritage and future; in this way we shall constantly strengthen those

spiritual weapons which forever will be our country’s most powerful resource in peace and war.” When delivering the Pledge of Allegiance, all must be standing at attention, facing the flag with the right hand over the heart. Men not in uniform should remove any nonreligious headdress with their right hand and hold it at the left shoulder, the hand being over the heart. Those in uniform should remain silent, face the flag, and render the military salute.

Pledge of Allegiance
I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

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Great Seal
n July 4, 1776, the Continental Congress appointed a committee to create a seal for the United States of America. Following the appointment of two additional committees, each building upon the other, the Great Seal was finalized and approved on June 20, 1782.

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of the United States

The Great Seal has two sides—an obverse, or front side, and a reverse side. The obverse side displays a bald eagle, the national bird, in the center. The bald eagle holds a scroll inscribed E pluribus unum in its beak. The phrase means “out of many, one” in Latin and signifies one nation that was created from thirteen separate colonies. In one of the eagle’s claws is an olive branch and in the other is a bundle of thirteen 24

Obverse side of the Great Seal of the United States. Courtesy of the U.S. Department of State

arrows. The olive branch signifies peace and the arrows signify war. A shield with thirteen red and white stripes covers the eagle’s breast. The eagle alone supports the shield to signify that Americans should rely on their own virtue and not that of other nations. The red and white stripes of the shield represent the states

united under and supporting the blue, representing the President and Congress. The color red

which form a constellation. The constellation represents the fact that the new Nation is taking its place among the sovereign powers. The reverse side contains a thirteen-step pyramid with the year 1776 in Roman numerals at its base. Above the pyramid is the Eye of Providence and the motto Annuit Coeptis, meaning “He [God] favors our undertakings.” Below the pyramid, Novus Ordo Seclorum, meaning “New Order of the Ages,” is written on a scroll to signify the beginning of the new American era. The obverse side of the Great Seal is used on postage stamps, military uniforms, U.S. passports, and above the doors of U.S. embassies worldwide. Both sides are present on the one dollar bill.

Reverse side of the Great Seal of the United States. Courtesy of the U.S. Department of State

signifies valor and bravery, the color white signifies purity and innocence, and the color blue signifies vigilance, perseverance, and justice. Above the eagle’s head is a cloud that surrounds a blue field containing thirteen stars,

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Motto of the
n July 30, 1956, President Dwight D. Eisenhower approved a Joint Resolution of the 84th Congress officially establishing the phrase, “In God We Trust,” as the national motto of the United States. “In God We Trust” replaced the phrase, E Pluribus Unum, which had been selected as the Nation’s official motto in 1776. The motto, “In God We Trust,” can be traced back nearly 200 years in U.S. history. During the War of 1812, as the morning light revealed that the American flag was still waving above Fort McHenry, Francis Scott Key wrote the poem that would eventually become our national anthem. The final stanza of the poem read, “And this be our motto: ‘In God is our trust!’” In 1864, the phrase was changed to “In God We Trust” and included on the redesigned two-cent coin. The following year, Congress
President Lyndon B. Johnson delivering his State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress, January 8, 1964. Engraved above the Speaker’s dais is the motto “In God We Trust.”
Courtesy of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum

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United States
authorized the Director of the Philadelphia Mint to place the motto on all gold and silver coins. The motto began appearing on all U. S. coins in 1938. “In God We Trust” became a part of the design of U. S. currency (paper money) in 1957. The Bureau of Engraving and Printing has incorporated the motto on all currency since 1963. “In God We Trust” is also engraved on the wall above the Speaker’s dais in the Chamber of the House of Representatives and over the entrance to the Chamber of the Senate.

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P

Presidential & Historical Speeches
speeches are also famous for referring to America, with its values and democratic system, as an important example for the rest of the world. Much later, Presidents Franklin D. Roosevelt and John F. Kennedy called upon these same ideas in important speeches during times of crisis, and President Ronald Reagan was clearly inspired by these principles in his call for freedom around the world during the Cold War. In this section, you will also read about a leader who, rather than looking outside our borders, called on America itself to live up to its promise as a land of liberty and equality.

eople in the United States greatly value their current and historical leaders. Following our democratic tradition, these leaders are remembered not only for their actions, but also for their speeches and proclamations to the American people. Beginning with President George Washington’s call for unity in his 1796 Farewell Address, American leaders often emphasized similar themes when addressing the Nation. President Abraham Lincoln perhaps best expressed the concept of unity and a common civic identity during the American Civil War, when our Nation’s unity was severely threatened. Lincoln’s

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Farewell Address (1796)

A

George Washington

fter leading the Continental army to victory over the British during the American Revolution, George Washington was the obvious choice to become the first president of the United States. Known as the “Father of Our Country,” Washington performed honorably during his two terms as president in helping form the new government and guiding the young country through several foreign and domestic crises. Early in the year 1796, Washington decided not to seek reelection for a third time and began drafting a farewell address to the American people. With the help of Treasury Secretary Alexander Hamilton, Washington completed his farewell address and the final version
“Washington Crossing the Delaware,” by Emanuel Leutze.
Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 066-G-15D-25

was printed in Philadelphia’s American Daily Advertiser on September 19, 1796. Washington was concerned that increasing geographical sectionalism and the rise of political factions would threaten the stability of the eightyear-old Constitution and he used his address to urge Americans to unite for the long-term success of the Nation. He called for a distinctly “American character” that concentrated on the good of the country and would avoid potentially troublesome alliances with foreign nations. On February 22, 1862, when America was engulfed in the Civil War, both houses of the U.S. Congress agreed to assemble and read aloud Washington’s Farewell

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Address. This practice was later revived and performed annually by both houses of Congress. Since 1893, the U.S. Senate has observed our first president’s birthday by selecting one of its members to read aloud Washington’s Farewell Address from the Senate floor.
“George Washington at Princeton,” by Charles Willson Peale.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-96753

ExcErpts
…Citizens, by birth or choice, of a common country, that country has a right to concentrate your affections. The name of American, which belongs to you in your national capacity, must always exalt the just pride of patriotism, more than any appellation derived from local discriminations. With slight shades of difference, you have the same religion, manners, habits and political principles. You have in a common cause, fought and triumphed together; the independence and liberty you possess are the work of joint councils and joint efforts, of common dangers, sufferings, and successes…. It is substantially true, that virtue or morality is a necessary spring of popular government. The rule, indeed, extends with more or less force to every species of free government. Who that is a sincere friend to it can look with indifference upon attempts to shake the foundation of the fabric? Promote, then, as an object of primary importance, institutions for the general diffusion of knowledge. In proportion as the structure of a government gives force to public opinion, it is essential that the public opinion should be enlightened.

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First Inaugural (1861) Address

A

Abraham Lincoln

braham Lincoln was sworn in as the 16th president of the United States on March 4, 1861. This was a difficult time in our Nation’s history. The issues of how much control the federal government should have over the states and whether to permit slavery in the newly acquired western territories divided the Union. In December 1860, shortly after Lincoln’s election was declared final, the state of South Carolina seceded from the Union. By February 1861, six additional states seceded and formed the Confederate States of America under provisional president Jefferson Davis. In an effort to calm the fears of the Southern states, Lincoln turned to four historic documents when preparing his inaugural remarks. Each of these references were concerned with states’ rights: Daniel Webster’s 1830 reply to Robert Y. Hayne; President Andrew Jackson’s Nullification Proclamation of 1832; Henry

Clay’s compromise speech of 1850; and the Constitution of the United States. Lincoln believed that secession was illegal, and as chief executive, it was his responsibility to preserve the Union. The resulting speech was a message of unity to a troubled nation.

President Abraham Lincoln.
Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 111-B-3656

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Inauguration of President Abraham Lincoln on the steps of the U.S. Capitol, March 4, 1861.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-48090

ExcErpts
…By the frame of the government under which we live, this same people have wisely given their public servants but little power for mischief; and have, with equal wisdom, provided for the return of that little to their own hands at very short intervals. While the people retain their virtue and vigilance, no administration, by any extreme of 31

wickedness or folly, can very seriously injure the government in the short space of four years.... I am loath to close. We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be enemies. Though passion may have strained, it must not break our bonds of affection. The mystic chords of memory, stretching from every battle-field, and patriot grave, to every living heart and hearth-stone, all over this broad land, will yet swell the chorus of the Union, when again touched, as surely they will be, by the better angels of our nature.

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Gettysburg Address(1863)
onsidered one of the most important speeches in American history, Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg Address successfully expressed the principles of liberty and equality that the United States was founded upon and proudly honored those that fought and perished for the survival of the Union. During his remarks, he spoke of “a new birth of freedom” for the Nation. Lincoln delivered this speech at the dedication of the Soldiers’ National Cemetery at Gettysburg

C

Abraham Lincoln

on November 19, 1863. The entire speech lasted just two minutes. The Battle of Gettysburg took place July 1-3, 1863, in the rural town of Gettysburg, Pennsylvania, roughly 50 miles northwest of Baltimore, Maryland. Confederate forces, led by General Robert E. Lee’s Army of Northern Virginia invaded Union territory, seeking to take the war out of Virginia and put the Union army in a vulnerable defensive position. General Lee’s soldiers fought the Union’s

Crowd at Gettysburg, November 19, 1863. President Abraham Lincoln in center.
Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 111-B-4975

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Army of the Potomac under the command of General George C. Meade. When the fighting ended on July 3, the two sides suffered more than 45,000 casualties, making it one of the bloodiest

battles to date. Confederate forces retreated back to Virginia on the night of July 4, 1863, and the Battle of Gettysburg is considered by most scholars to be the turning point in the American Civil War.

GEttysburG AddrEss
Four score and seven years ago our fathers brought forth on this continent, a new nation, conceived in Liberty, and dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Now we are engaged in a great civil war, testing whether that nation, or any nation so conceived and so dedicated, can long endure. We are met on a great battle-field of that war. We have come to dedicate a portion of that field, as a final resting place for those who here gave their lives that the nation might live. It is altogether fitting and proper that we should do this. But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

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T Four Freedoms(1941)

I

Franklin D. Roosevelt

n January 1941, as much of Europe had fallen victim to the advancing army of Nazi Germany, Franklin D. Roosevelt began his unprecedented third term as president of the United States. Great Britain was finding it increasingly difficult to hold off the aggressive German army and Roosevelt considered the Germans to be a significant threat to U.S. national security. During his annual State of the Union address on January 6, 1941, Roosevelt pledged his support for Great Britain by continuing aid and increasing production at war industries in the United States. By aiding in the war effort, Roosevelt explained that the United States would be protecting the universal freedoms and liberties to which all people are entitled, not just Americans. In his speech, Roosevelt staunchly defended democracy around the world and stated that the United

President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-117121

States would not be “intimidated by the threats of dictators.” He concluded by eloquently describing “four essential human freedoms” that the United States hoped to secure and extend to all individuals. These universal freedoms were: freedom of speech and expression, freedom of every person to worship God in his own way, freedom from want, and freedom from fear.

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President Franklin D. Roosevelt delivering his State of the Union address before a joint session of Congress, January 6, 1941.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-78575

In 1943, following America’s entry into World War II, artist Norman Rockwell captured the idea of these four basic freedoms in a series of paintings published in the popular magazine, The Saturday

Evening Post. The paintings served as the centerpiece of an exhibition that toured the United States to help raise money for the war effort.

ExcErpts
I address you, the Members of the Seventy-seventh Congress, at a moment unprecedented in the history of the Union. I use the word “unprecedented,” because at no previous time has American security been as seriously threatened from without as it is today.... As a nation, we may take pride in the fact that we are softhearted; but we cannot afford to be soft-headed.... Just as our national policy in internal affairs has been based upon a decent respect for the rights and the dignity of all our fellow men within our gates, so our national policy in foreign affairs has been based on a decent respect for the rights and dignity of all nations, large and small. And the justice of morality must and will win in the end.... In the future days, which we seek to make secure, we look forward to a world founded upon four essential human freedoms. 36

The first is freedom of speech and expression—everywhere in the world. The second is freedom of every person to worship God in his own way—everywhere in the world. The third is freedom from want—which, translated into world terms, means economic understandings which will secure to every nation a healthy peacetime life for its inhabitants—everywhere in the world. The fourth is freedom from fear—which, translated into world terms, means a world-wide reduction of armaments to such a point and in such a thorough fashion that no nation will be in a position to commit an act of physical aggression against any neighbor—anywhere in the world. That is no vision of a distant millennium. It is a definite basis for a kind of world attainable in our own time and generation. That kind of world is the very antithesis of the so-called new order of tyranny which the dictators seek to create with the crash of a bomb. To that new order we oppose the greater conception—the moral order. A good society is able to face schemes of world domination and foreign revolutions alike without fear. Since the beginning of our American history, we have been engaged in change—in a perpetual peaceful revolution—a revolution which goes on steadily, quietly adjusting itself to changing conditions—without the concentration camp or the quick-lime in the ditch. The world order which we seek is the cooperation of free countries, working together in a friendly, civilized society. This nation has placed its destiny in the hands and heads and hearts of its millions of free men and women; and its faith in freedom under the guidance of God. Freedom means the supremacy of human rights everywhere. Our support goes to those who struggle to gain those rights or keep them. Our strength is our unity of purpose. To that high concept there can be no end save victory.

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Inaugural Address

I

John F. Kennedy (1961)
with the Communist-led Union of Soviet Socialist Republics was becoming increasingly volatile around the world. From Germany to Cuba to Southeast Asia, tension between U.S.-supported forces and Soviet-supported forces threatened to unleash a devastating nuclear exchange.

n 1960, John F. Kennedy defeated Richard M. Nixon to become the 35th president of the United States. A World War II hero and former representative and senator from Massachusetts, Kennedy and his young family brought an optimistic, youthful spirit to the White House. At the time, America’s Cold War struggle

President John F. Kennedy delivering his inaugural address, January 20, 1961.
Courtesy of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

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On January 20, 1961, Kennedy delivered his inaugural address on the steps of the U.S. Capitol in Washington, DC. His remarks focused on the critical foreign policy issues of the time. In stating that the United States would “pay any price, bear any burden,” he was signaling American resolve to support the forces of freedom in the face of the Communist challenge. Kennedy, however, also presented an alternate vision, calling on the Soviets and Americans to pursue arms control, negotiations, and the “struggle against the common enemies of man: tyranny, poverty, disease and war itself.” As a young president, Kennedy saw himself as part of a “new generation of Americans,” and he was not afraid to ask his generation to work toward a better world. In the most famous part of the speech,

President John F. Kennedy.
Courtesy of the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum

Kennedy challenged Americans to move beyond self-interest and work for their country, saying “Ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.”

ExcErpts
We observe today not a victory of party but a celebration of freedom—symbolizing an end as well as a beginning—signifying renewal as well as change. For I have sworn before you and Almighty God the same solemn oath our forbears prescribed nearly a century and three-quarters ago. The world is very different now. For man holds in his mortal hands the power to abolish all forms of human poverty and all forms of human life. And yet the same revolutionary beliefs for which our forebears fought are still at issue around the globe—the belief 39

that the rights of man come not from the generosity of the state but from the hand of God. We dare not forget today that we are the heirs of that first revolution. Let the word go forth from this time and place, to friend and foe alike, that the torch has been passed to a new generation of Americans—born in this century, tempered by war, disciplined by a hard and bitter peace, proud of our ancient heritage—and unwilling to witness or permit the slow undoing of those human rights to which this nation has always been committed, and to which we are committed today at home and around the world. Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe to assure the survival and the success of liberty…. In the long history of the world, only a few generations have been granted the role of defending freedom in its hour of maximum danger. I do not shrink from this responsibility—I welcome it. I do not believe that any of us would exchange places with any other people or any other generation. The energy, the faith, the devotion which we bring to this endeavor will light our country and all who serve it—and the glow from that fire can truly light the world. And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country. My fellow citizens of the world: ask not what America will do for you, but what together we can do for the freedom of man. Finally, whether you are citizens of America or citizens of the world, ask of us here the same high standards of strength and sacrifice which we ask of you. With a good conscience our only sure reward, with history the final judge of our deeds, let us go forth to lead the land we love, asking His blessing and His help, but knowing that here on earth God’s work must truly be our own.

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I Have a Dream (1963)
n August 28, 1963, nearly 250,000 people gathered in Washington, DC, as part of the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom. The demonstrators marched from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial where individuals from all segments of society called for civil rights and equal protection for all citizens, regardless of color or background.

O

Martin Luther King, Jr.

The last speaker of the day was Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., whose “I Have a Dream” speech encompassed the ideals set forth in the Declaration of Independence “that all men are created equal.” King’s message of freedom and democracy for all people, of all races and backgrounds, is remembered as the landmark statement of the civil rights movement in the United States.

Demonstrators at the March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom in Washington, DC, August 28, 1963. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-DIG-ppmsca-03128

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The following year, Congress passed the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which prohibited segregation in public places, provided for the integration of public schools and facilities, and made

employment on the basis of race or ethnicity illegal. This act was the most comprehensive civil rights legislation since the reconstruction era following the American Civil War.

ExcErpts
…I say to you today, my friends, so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream. I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”… I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character…. This will be the day, this will be the day when all of God’s children will be able to sing with new meaning: “My country, ‘tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing. Land where my fathers died, land of the pilgrim’s pride, From every mountainside, let freedom ring!”… And when this happens, when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual: “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!”

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Remarks at the (1987) Brandenburg Gate
n June 12, 1987, President Ronald Reagan delivered a formal address to the people of West Berlin in front of the Brandenburg Gate, a once proud symbol of German unity. At the time, a wall surrounding West Berlin separated the city from East Berlin and other areas of East Germany. The barrier, known as the Berlin Wall, was heavily guarded and East Germany’s Communist

O

Ronald Reagan

government did not allow its people access to West Berlin. The Berlin Wall was a symbol of the tyranny that restrained freedom and individual liberty throughout the Communist bloc of Eastern Europe. Because of the gate’s proximity to East Berlin, Reagan’s speech could be heard on the Eastern side of the wall as well. In his remarks, he spoke of the increasing divide

President Ronald Reagan delivering his address at the Brandenburg Gate in West Berlin, June 12, 1987.
Courtesy of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library

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between the freedom and prosperity of the West and the political slavery of Communist Eastern Europe, dominated at the time by the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics. Reagan imagined a world in which East and West were united in freedom rather than oppression. He believed that ultimately totalitarianism and oppression could not suppress the freedoms that are

entitled to all individuals. Reagan’s direct challenge to Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev, saying “If you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization…Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!” is considered by many to have affirmed the dissolution of the Soviet Union and the end of the Communist stronghold over Eastern Europe.

ExcErpts
…Behind me stands a wall that encircles the free sectors of this city, part of a vast system of barriers that divides the entire continent of Europe. From the Baltic, south, those barriers cut across Germany in a gash of barbed wire, concrete, dog runs, and guard towers. Farther south, there may be no visible, no obvious wall. But there remain armed guards and checkpoints all the same—still a restriction on the right to travel, still an instrument to impose upon ordinary men and women the will of a totalitarian state. Yet it is here in Berlin where the wall emerges most clearly; here, cutting across your city, where the news photo and the television screen have imprinted this brutal division of a continent upon the mind of the world. Standing before the Brandenburg Gate, every man is a German, separated from his fellow men. Every man is a Berliner, forced to look upon a scar.... General Secretary Gorbachev, if you seek peace, if you seek prosperity for the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe, if you seek liberalization: Come here to this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, open this gate! Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!

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Fundamental Documents of

I

American Democracy
of the Constitution, the United States government has continued to adapt in order to live up to its promise of liberty and equality for all individuals. The Federalist Papers, written between 1787 and 1788, give today’s citizens a remarkable look into the framing of our government more than 200 years ago. Through the Bill of Rights and seventeen subsequent amendments, the Constitution has been changed over the years to solidify America’s promise of liberty for all its citizens. The following section introduces you to these, and other important documents, that have helped make the United States the land of opportunity it is today.

n its most basic form, the U.S. system of government is a mutual agreement between the people and the government to ensure that individual liberties are maintained and continue to prosper under a free society. This idea was established upon the signing of the Mayflower Compact by some of America’s first settlers, the Pilgrims, in 1620. The Declaration of Independence, signed on July 4, 1776, listed America’s reasons for independence from Great Britain, but also further explained the rights of free people and how they should live under a responsible government. As it developed into a nation, based upon the firm foundation

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T Mayflower Compact

I

n the late 1500s, several religious groups in England wanted to establish a new church completely independent from the Church of England. These individuals were called “separatists” and were often persecuted because of their religious practices and beliefs. One of these groups became known as the Pilgrims. After continuously being denied the right to establish their own church in England, the Pilgrims decided to move their families to Holland. While Holland allowed them to worship freely,

the Pilgrims soon began to miss the language and customs of life in England. After much discussion, the Pilgrims decided to move the entire community to America, where they could practice their religious beliefs and still maintain an English lifestyle. On September 6, 1620, their ship, called the “Mayflower,” set sail for America. Two months later, the Pilgrims landed off the coast of Massachusetts, much further north than they originally intended. Since this land was outside the

(1620)

Signing the Mayflower Compact. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ61-206

46

jurisdiction of the Virginia Colony’s government in Jamestown, the group agreed to draft a social contract for selfgovernment based on consent of the governed and majority rule. All male adults signed the contract and agreed to be bound by its rules. This agreement became

known as the Mayflower Compact and was the first act of European self-government in America. The concept that government is a form of covenant between two parties, the government and the people, was a major source of inspiration to the framers of the U.S. Constitution.

The Mayflower CoMpaCT
We whose names are underwritten, the loyal subjects of our dread Sovereign Lord King James, by the Grace of God of Great Britain, France and Ireland, King, Defender of the Faith, etc. Having undertaken, for the Glory of God and advancement of the Christian Faith and Honour of our King and Country, a Voyage to plant the First Colony in the Northern Parts of Virginia, do by these presents solemnly and mutually in the presence of God and one of another, Covenant and Combine ourselves together into a Civil Body Politic, for our better ordering and preservation and furtherance of the ends aforesaid; and by virtue hereof to enact, constitute and frame such just and equal Laws, Ordinances, Acts, Constitutions and Offices, from time to time, as shall be thought most meet and convenient for the general good of the Colony, unto which we promise all due submission and obedience. In witness whereof we have hereunder subscribed our names at Cape Cod, the 11th of November, in the year of the reign of our Sovereign Lord King James, of England, France and Ireland the eighteenth, and of Scotland the fifty-fourth. Anno Domini 1620.

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T Declaration of(1776) Independence

F

ollowing the end of the French and Indian War in 1763, Great Britain established itself as the dominant power in North America. The victory greatly increased the British presence in North America, but left the British government with a significant amount of debt. Frustrated by what was perceived as a lack of cooperation during the French and Indian War, Great Britain demanded that, at the very least, the colonists should pay for the cost of their own government and security.

The British began tightening control over the colonies by bypassing colonial legislatures and imposing direct taxes and laws that angered many American colonists. In 1764, the Sugar Act was enacted by the British Parliament and became the first law with the specific goal of raising money from the colonies. This law was followed by the Currency Act which prohibited the colonies from issuing their own currency, the Quartering Act, which required the colonies to provide housing and supplies for British troops, and the Stamp

The Destruction of Tea at Boston Harbor, 1773. Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 148-GW-439

48

Act, which directly taxed the colonies by requiring all documents and packages to obtain a stamp showing that the tax had been paid. Violations of these acts often led to harsh judgments by British-appointed judges without the consent of local juries. American colonists responded to these acts with organized protest, arguing against taxation without proper representation in Parliament. They believed that the strong measures enacted by the government violated their rights as British citizens. The colonists also believed that government should not interfere in the daily lives of its citizens, but should serve to secure and protect the liberty and property of the people. On September 5, 1774, delegates from twelve of the thirteen colonies convened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, for the First Continental Congress. During the meeting, they prepared a petition, called the Declaration of Rights and Grievances, for King George III, king of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland. They also established the Association of 1774, which urged the colonists to avoid using British goods. Before adjourning, the delegates planned for a Second Continental Congress to meet on May 10,

The committee of Congress drafting the Declaration of Independence, 1776.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-17878

1775, in case the British failed to respond adequately to its petition. The Second Continental Congress convened in May 1775 and following much debate, agreed that reconciliation with Britain was impossible. On June 7, 1776, Virginia delegate Richard Henry Lee called for a resolution of independence. Congress then appointed John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, Robert R. Livingston, and Roger Sherman to draft a statement of independence for the colonies, with Jefferson assigned to perform the actual writing of the document. In writing the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson drew heavily upon the idea of natural rights and individual liberty. These

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In “Declaration of Independence,” a painting by John Trumbull,Thomas Jefferson and his committee present the formal statement of independence from Great Britain.
Courtesy of the National Archives, File # 148-GW-662

ideas had been widely expressed by 17th century philosopher John Locke, and others, at that time. The beginning of the document explains that “All men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Jefferson then listed formal grievances against Great Britain, thus justifying the colonies’ decision to completely break away from the mother country. On July 2, 1776, the document was sent to Congress for consideration

and debate. Two days later, on July 4, 1776, Congress unanimously adopted the Declaration of Independence. Of the fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence, eight were foreign-born. They included: Button Gwinnett (England), Francis Lewis (Wales), Robert Morris (England), James Smith (Ireland), George Taylor (Ireland), Matthew Thornton (Ireland), James Wilson (Scotland), and John Witherspoon (Scotland).

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The DeCLARATION OF INDePeNDeNCe
ACTion of SeCond ConTinenTal CongreSS, July 4, 1776
The Unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

WHEN in the Course of human Events, it becomes necessary for one People to dissolve the Political Bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the Powers of the Earth, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent Respect to the Opinions of Mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the Separation. WE hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness—That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these Ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its Foundation on such Principles, and organizing its Powers in such Form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes; and accordingly all Experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while Evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security. Such has been the patient Sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the Necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The History of the present King of Great-Britain is a History of repeated Injuries and Usurpations, all having in direct Object the Establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid World. He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public Good. He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing Importance, unless suspended in their Operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. He has refused to pass other Laws for the Accommodation of large Districts of People, unless those People would relinquish the Right of Representation in the Legislature, a Right inestimable to them, and formidable to Tyrants only.

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He has called together Legislative Bodies at Places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the Depository of their public Records, for the sole Purpose of fatiguing them into Compliance with his Measures. He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly Firmness his Invasions on the Rights of the People. He has refused for a long Time, after such Dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the Dangers of Invasion from without, and Convulsions within. He has endeavoured to prevent the Population of these States; for that Purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their Migrations hither, and raising the Conditions of new Appropriations of Lands. He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers. He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the Tenure of their Offices, and the Amount and Payment of their Salaries. He has erected a Multitude of new Offices, and sent hither Swarms of Officers to harrass our People, and eat out their Substance. He has kept among us, in Times of Peace, Standing Armies, without the consent of our Legislatures. He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power. He has combined with others to subject us to a Jurisdiction foreign to our Constitution, and unacknowledged by our Laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: For quartering large Bodies of Armed Troops among us: For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from Punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all Parts of the World: For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: For depriving us, in many Cases, of the Benefits of Trial by Jury: For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended Offences: For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an arbitrary Government, and enlarging its Boundaries, so as to render it at once an Example and fit Instrument for introducing the same absolute Rule into these Colonies: For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments: 52

For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with Power to legislate for us in all Cases whatsoever. He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us. He has plundered our Seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our Towns, and destroyed the Lives of our People. He is, at this Time, transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the Works of Death, Desolation, and Tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty and Perfidy, scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous Ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized Nation. He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the Executioners of their Friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands. He has excited domestic Insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the Inhabitants of our Frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known Rule of Warfare, is an undistinguished Destruction of all Ages, Sexes and Conditions. In every stage of these Oppressions we have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble Terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated Injury. A Prince, whose Character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the Ruler of a free People. Nor have we been wanting in Attentions to our British Brethren. We have warned them from Time to Time of Attempts by their Legislature to extend an unwarrantable Jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the Circumstances of our Emigration and Settlement here. We have appealed to their native Justice and Magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the Ties of our common Kindred to disavow these Usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our Connections and Correspondence. They too have been deaf to the Voice of Justice and of Consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the Necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of Mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace, Friends. We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the World for the Rectitude of our Intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly Publish and Declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political Connection between them and the State of Great-Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. —And for the

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support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor. Signed by ORDER and in BEHALF of the CONGRESS, JOHN HANCOCK, President Attest. CHARLES THOMSON, Secretary

SignerS of The deClaraTion of independenCe
Georgia: Button Gwinnett Lyman Hall George Walton North Carolina: William Hooper Joseph Hewes John Penn South Carolina: Edward Rutledge Thomas Heyward, Jr. Thomas Lynch, Jr. Arthur Middleton Massachusetts: Samuel Adams John Adams Robert Treat Paine Elbridge Gerry John Hancock Maryland: Samuel Chase William Paca Thomas Stone Charles Carroll of Carrollton Virginia: George Wythe Richard Henry Lee Thomas Jefferson Benjamin Harrison Thomas Nelson, Jr. Francis Lightfoot Lee Carter Braxton Pennsylvania: Robert Morris Benjamin Rush Benjamin Franklin John Morton George Clymer James Smith George Taylor James Wilson George Ross Delaware: Caesar Rodney George Read Thomas McKean New York: William Floyd Philip Livingston Francis Lewis Lewis Morris New Jersey: Richard Stockton John Witherspoon Francis Hopkinson John Hart Abraham Clark New Hampshire: Josiah Bartlett Matthew Thornton William Whipple Rhode Island: Stephen Hopkins William Ellery Connecticut: Roger Sherman Samuel Huntington William Williams Oliver Wolcott

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T Federalist Papers

(1787-1788) by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison

F

ollowing the Constitutional Convention in 1787, a national debate began concerning whether or not to ratify the proposed United States Constitution. Newspapers across the Nation published essays and letters on both sides—for and against ratification. The most famous of these writings became known as the Federalist Papers. The Federalist Papers were a series of eighty-five essays written by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison under the pen name “Publius.” The essays were published primarily in the Independent Journal and the New York Packet and their purpose was to urge New York delegates to ratify the proposed United States Constitution. In 1788, the essays were published in a bound volume. The essays explain particular provisions of the United States Constitution in specific detail.

Title Page of The Federalist, vol. 1, 1799.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-70508

Alexander Hamilton and James Madison were both members of the Constitutional Convention and for this reason the Federalist Papers offer an exciting look into the intentions of those drafting the United States Constitution. Today, the Federalist Papers are considered to be one of the most important historical documents on the founding principles of the United States’ form of government. 55

noTable exCerpTS
no. 2 (John Jay) To all general purposes we have uniformly been one people; each individual citizen everywhere enjoying the same national rights, privileges, and protection.

John Jay.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-50375

no. 22 (alexander haMilTon) The fabric of American empire ought to rest on the solid basis of the consent of the people. The streams of national power ought to flow from that pure, original fountain of all legitimate authority.

Alexander Hamilton.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZC4-6423

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no. 41 (JaMeS MadiSon) Every man who loves peace, every man who loves his country, every man who loves liberty, ought to have it ever before his eyes, that he may cherish in his heart a due attachment to the Union of America, and be able to set a due value on the means of preserving it.

James Madison.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-87924

no. 46 (JaMeS MadiSon) [T]he ultimate authority...resides in the people alone. no. 51 (alexander haMilTon or JaMeS MadiSon) But what is government itself, but the greatest of all reflections on human nature? If men were angels, no government would be necessary. If angels were to govern men, neither external nor internal controls on government would be necessary.

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T Constitution (1787)

I

of the United States

n May 1787, fifty-five delegates from each of the thirteen states, with the exception of Rhode Island, convened in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, to revise the Articles of Confederation and create a more centralized form of government for the United States. Two competing plans were presented to the delegates— Edmund Randolph’s Virginia Plan and William Patterson’s New Jersey Plan. The Virginia Plan

would create a more powerful central government with three components: an executive, legislative, and judiciary sharing power. The New Jersey Plan would revise and amend the current Articles of Confederation to give Congress control over taxes and trade, but still provide each of the states with basic autonomy at the local level. Through extensive debate, it soon became clear that amending the

In “Scene at the Signing of the Constitution,” artist Howard Chandler Christy depicts Independence Hall in Philadelphia, PA, on September 17, 1787. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USA7-34630

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Articles of Confederation would not be sufficient and a new form of government would need to be established. The most contentious issues included how much power the central government would have, how the states would be represented in Congress, and how these representatives would be elected. The final document, which was signed on September 17, 1787, combined ideas from both the Virginia and New Jersey Plans, creating a central government with three branches and giving states equal representation in the Senate regardless of state size.

Representation in the lower chamber, the House of Representatives, was based on state population. The Constitution of the United States is the “supreme law of the land” and serves as the basic legal framework for the U.S. system of government. It has lasted longer than any other nation’s constitution. It has been revised, or amended, only twenty-seven times since 1787. James Madison, a Virginia delegate and fourth president of the United States, is known as the “Father of the Constitution.”

The preaMble To The ConSTiTuTion
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, 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.

H For the complete text of the Constitution of the United States and its subsequent amendments, including the Bill of Rights, see Form M-654. 59

T Bill of Rights(1791)

F

ollowing the successful creation of a new Constitution, which outlined the form and structure of the U.S. government, a public debate concerning the need to protect individual freedoms arose. Many believed that guarantees of individual rights were not needed because, under the Constitution, the people held all power not specifically granted to the central government. Others, with the memory of British tyranny fresh in their minds, demanded a list of individual rights that would be guaranteed to all citizens. As the debate wore on, Thomas Jefferson, then serving as ambassador to France, wrote a letter to James Madison back in America stating, “A bill of rights is what the people are entitled to against every government on earth, general or particular, and what no just government should refuse, or rest on inference.” This position quickly gained popularity and a compromise was finally reached. Several states, in their formal ratification of the Constitution, asked for such amendments, while others ratified the Constitution with

Copy of the twelve amendments to the Constitution as passed by Congress on September 25, 1789.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, rbpe 00000600

the understanding that the amendments would be offered during the first meeting of Congress. On September 25, 1789, the First Congress of the United States offered twelve amendments to the Constitution that addressed individual freedoms. Two were not ratified immediately, but the remaining ten were ratified by threefourths of the state legislatures on December 15, 1791. These first ten amendments became known as the Bill of Rights.

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Emancipation Proclamation

A

Abraham Lincoln (1863)
The proclamation was greeted with celebration in Boston, New York, Washington, DC, and elsewhere. In order for these words to become reality, however, much more fighting was still to come. By the end of the American Civil War in 1865, almost 200,000 African Americans had fought for the Union. In December of that year, the U.S. Constitution was amended to free all slaves living in any part of the United States. The Thirteenth Amendment completed the work that the Emancipation Proclamation had begun—ending all slavery in the United States.

s the fierce fighting of the American Civil War entered its third year, President Abraham Lincoln acted to give a new war aim to the soldiers of the Union army. On January 1, 1863, Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation, which effectively freed the slaves in the states openly rebelling against the United States. The Civil War quickly became not only a fight to preserve the Union, but also a cause for the spread of freedom to all Americans. Many of the recently freed slaves joined the Union army or navy, and fought bravely for the freedom of others.

“First Reading of the Emancipation Proclamation of President Lincoln” by Francis Bicknell Carpenter.
Courtesy of the U.S. Senate, Catalog# 33.00005.000

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eManCipaTion proClaMaTion
January 1, 1863 By the President of the United States of America: A Proclamation. Whereas, on the twenty-second day of September, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-two, a proclamation was issued by the President of the United States, containing, among other things, the following, to wit: “That on the first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, all persons held as slaves within any State or designated part of a State, the people whereof shall then be in rebellion against the United States, shall be then, thenceforward, and forever free; and the Executive Government of the United States, including the military and naval authority thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of such persons, and will do no act or acts to repress such persons, or any of them, in any efforts they may make for their actual freedom. “That the Executive will, on the first day of January aforesaid, by proclamation, designate the States and parts of States, if any, in which the people thereof, respectively, shall then be in rebellion against the United States; and the fact that any State, or the people thereof, shall on that day be, in good faith, represented in the Congress of the United States by members chosen thereto at elections wherein a majority of the qualified voters of such State shall have participated, shall, in the absence of strong countervailing testimony, be deemed conclusive evidence that such State, and the people thereof, are not then in rebellion against the United States.” Now, therefore I, Abraham Lincoln, President of the United States, by virtue of the power in me vested as Commander-in-Chief, of the Army and Navy of the United States in time of actual armed rebellion against the authority and government of the United States, and as a fit and necessary war measure for suppressing said rebellion, do, on this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty-three, and in accordance with my purpose so to do publicly proclaimed for the full period of one hundred days, from the day first above mentioned, order and designate as the States and parts of States wherein the people thereof respectively, are this day in rebellion against the United States, the following, to wit: 62

Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, (except the Parishes of St. Bernard, Plaquemines, Jefferson, St. John, St. Charles, St. James Ascension, Assumption, Terrebonne, Lafourche, St. Mary, St. Martin, and Orleans, including the City of New Orleans) Mississippi, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia, (except the fortyeight counties designated as West Virginia, and also the counties of Berkley, Accomac, Northampton, Elizabeth City, York, Princess Ann, and Norfolk, including the cities of Norfolk and Portsmouth[)], and which excepted parts, are for the present, left precisely as if this proclamation were not issued. And by virtue of the power, and for the purpose aforesaid, I do order and declare that all persons held as slaves within said designated States, and parts of States, are, and henceforward shall be free; and that the Executive government of the United States, including the military and naval authorities thereof, will recognize and maintain the freedom of said persons. And I hereby enjoin upon the people so declared to be free to abstain from all violence, unless in necessary self-defence; and I recommend to them that, in all cases when allowed, they labor faithfully for reasonable wages. And I further declare and make known, that such persons of suitable condition, will be received into the armed service of the United States to garrison forts, positions, stations, and other places, and to man vessels of all sorts in said service. And upon this act, sincerely believed to be an act of justice, warranted by the Constitution, upon military necessity, I invoke the considerate judgment of mankind, and the gracious favor of Almighty God. In witness whereof, I have hereunto set my hand and caused the seal of the United States to be affixed. Done at the City of Washington, this first day of January, in the year of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and sixty three, and of the Independence of the United States of America the eighty-seventh. By the President: ABRAHAM LINCOLN WILLIAM H. SEWARD, Secretary of State.

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President Abraham Lincoln on the battlefield of Antietam, October 1862. The Battle of Antietam ended the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia’s first invasion into the North and led to President Lincoln’s issuance of the preliminary Emancipation Proclamation.
Courtesy of the National Archives, File # 165-SB-23

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Landmark of the Decisions

S

U.S. Supreme Court
the Constitution. The Supreme Court’s decisions determine how America’s principles and ideals, as expressed in the Constitution, are carried out in everyday life. These decisions impact the lives of all Americans. In the following section, you will read about several landmark decisions of the Supreme Court that are important to know and understand as a United States citizen.

ince it first convened in 1790, the U.S. Supreme Court has been the central arena for debate on some of America’s most important social and public policy issues including civil rights, powers of government, and equal opportunity. As the ultimate authority on constitutional law, the Supreme Court attempts to settle disputes when it appears that federal, state, or local laws conflict with

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Marbury v. Madison John Marshall(1803)

W

Delivering the Opinion of the Court

hile the U.S. Supreme Court wields immense power in determining the constitutionality of federal laws, its authority was still uncertain until 1803. Although most of the framers expected the Supreme Court to perform this essential role, the Court’s authority was not explicitly defined in the Constitution. Chief Justice John Marshall’s decision in Marbury v. Madison, speaking for a unanimous Court, established the power of judicial review, making the Supreme Court an equal partner in government along with the Legislative and Executive branches. The Supreme Court now serves as the final authority on the Constitution. The Marbury case began in 1801, during the last few weeks of President John Adams’s term as president, just before Thomas Jefferson assumed the presidency.

Congress had recently approved the appointment of several new justices of the peace in and around the District of Columbia. President Adams made appointments to

Chief Justice John Marshall.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-8499

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these positions, and the Senate confirmed each just one day before Jefferson took office. The secretary of state was to deliver the formal appointments prior to Jefferson taking office, however, many of the commissions were not delivered on time. One of those appointed, William Marbury, did not receive his commission and immediately filed suit against the new Secretary of State, James Madison, for failing to deliver it promptly. Marbury went directly to the Supreme Court, seeking a writ of mandamus, a legal order demanding compliance with the law, to require Secretary Madison to deliver the commission. Chief Justice

John Marshall was aware that if the Court forced Madison to deliver the commission, Jefferson and his administration would most likely ignore it, and thus undermine the authority of the Court. Marshall’s decision stated that Madison should have delivered the commission to Marbury, but the section of the Judiciary Act of 1789 that gave the Supreme Court the power to issue writs of mandamus exceeded the authority of the Court under Article III of the Constitution. The decision upheld the law as defined in the Constitution, limiting the Supreme Court’s power at the same time, and establishing the fundamental principle of judicial review.

ExcErpts
…The question, whether an act, repugnant to the constitution, can become the law of the land, is a question deeply interesting to the United States;… That the people have an original right to establish, for their future government, such principles as, in their opinion, shall most conduce to their own happiness, is the basis on which the whole American fabric has been erected.... This original and supreme will organizes the government, and assigns to different departments their respective powers. It may either stop here, or establish certain limits not to be transcended by those departments. The government of the United States is of the latter description. The powers of the legislature are defined and limited; and that those limits may not be mistaken, or

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forgotten, the constitution is written.… The distinction between a government with limited and unlimited powers is abolished, if those limits do not confine the persons on whom they are imposed, and if acts prohibited and acts allowed, are of equal obligation. It is a proposition too plain to be contested, that the constitution controls any legislative act repugnant to it; or, that the legislature may alter the constitution by an ordinary act. Between these alternatives there is no middle ground.... Certainly all those who have framed written constitutions contemplate them as forming the fundamental and paramount law of the nation, and consequently, the theory of every such government must be, that an act of the legislature, repugnant to the constitution, is void. This theory is essentially attached to a written constitution, and is, consequently, to be considered, by this court, as one of the fundamental principles of our society....

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Plessy v. Ferguson John Marshall Harlan

Delivering the Dissenting (1896) Opinion of the Court

W

hile great strides were made in establishing the political rights of African Americans following the American Civil War, the U.S. Supreme Court delivered several

decisions, most notably in the case of Plessy v. Ferguson, that impeded civil rights efforts in the United States.

Justice John Marshall Harlan.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-BH832-1038

Beginning in 1887, following the passage of the first “Jim Crow” laws in Florida, states began to require that railroads furnish separate accommodations for each race. “Jim Crow” laws sought to restrict the rights of African Americans. They were named after a popular minstrel character in the 1830s. The laws were unfair, and by this time, segregation was extended to most public facilities. Many saw the extension of segregation into railroads as a further objection of the work that Congress and the 69

federal government had done to affirm the rights of African Americans. On June 7, 1892, Homer Plessy, an African American from New Orleans, boarded a train and sat in a rail car for white passengers. A conductor asked him to move, but Plessy refused, and was then arrested and charged with violating the Jim Crow Car Act of 1890. Plessy challenged his arrest in court and the case was tried in New Orleans. He argued that segregation violated both the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Amendments to the U.S. Constitution. Through appeal, the case was heard before the U.S. Supreme Court in 1896. By an 8 to 1 decision, the Court ruled

against Plessy, thus establishing the “separate but equal” rule. The “separate but equal” rule mandated separate accommodations for blacks and whites on buses, trains, and in hotels, theaters, and schools. In a powerful dissent, Justice John Marshall Harlan disagreed with the majority, stating “Our Constitution is color-blind, and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens.” Harlan’s words provided inspiration to many involved in the civil rights movement, including Thurgood Marshall, whose arguments in Brown v. Board of Education helped overturn the “separate but equal” precedent in 1954.

ExcErpts
In respect of civil rights, common to all citizens, the Constitution of the United States does not, I think permit any public authority to know the race of those entitled to be protected in the enjoyment of such rights.... [I]n the view of the Constitution, in the eye of the law, there is in this country no superior, dominant, ruling class of citizens. There is no caste here. Our Constitution is color-blind and neither knows nor tolerates classes among citizens. In respect of civil rights, all citizens are equal before the law. The humblest is the peer of the most powerful. The law regards man as man and takes no account of his surroundings or of his color when his civil rights as guaranteed by the supreme law of the land are involved....

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West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette (1943) Robert Jackson Delivering

I

n 1940, as most of Europe was at war with Nazi Germany and the United States was increasing production at its war industries in support of Great Britain, a wave of patriotism swept the country. During this time, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Minersville School District v. Gobitis that public school students were required to salute the American

the Opinion of the Court

flag and recite the Pledge of Allegiance regardless of personal religious beliefs. Despite the ruling, many students, including the children of Jehovah’s Witnesses, a religious group in the United States, continued to resist saluting the flag and reciting the Pledge of Allegiance due to their religious beliefs. Many of these students were persecuted for their beliefs and intense pressure forced the Supreme Court to revisit the issue of First Amendment freedoms just three years later. In 1943, the Court heard arguments in the case of West Virginia State Board of Education v. Barnette. This case concerned a requirement by the West Virginia Board of Education that all teachers and students must salute the flag

A visiting rabbi teaching Orthodox religion to children in Jersey Homesteads, NJ, 1936.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USF33-011049-M4

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A church service on Thanksgiving Day,1942.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USE6-D-006812

as part of their daily program. Refusal to do so resulted in harsh punishment, including, in some cases, expulsion. After reviewing arguments on both sides, the Court reversed its original ruling in Minersville School District v. Gobitis,

stating that this required activity violated the First Amendment. Justice Robert Jackson delivered the decision of the majority, writing that “If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein.” The Court’s ruling ensured that the right to worship freely, as long as it does not interfere with the rights of others, is protected under the Constitution.

ExcErpts
…The very purpose of a Bill of Rights was to withdraw certain subjects from the vicissitudes of political controversy, to place them beyond the reach of majorities and officials and to establish them as legal principles to be applied by the courts. One’s right to life, liberty, and property, to free speech, a free press, freedom of worship and assembly, and other fundamental rights may not be submitted to vote; they depend on the outcome of no elections.... If there is any fixed star in our constitutional constellation, it is that no official, high or petty, can prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, religion, or other matters of opinion or force citizens to confess by word or act their faith therein. If there are any circumstances which permit an exception, they do not now occur to us....

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Brown v. Board of Education (1954) Earl Warren Delivering the

S

ince the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1896 decision in the case of Plessy v. Ferguson, racially segregated public schools were accepted under the basis of the “separate but equal” rule. The “separate but equal” rule mandated separate accommodations for blacks and whites on buses, trains, and in hotels, theaters,

Opinion of the Court

and schools. Many civil rights groups, including the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), worked to overturn this ruling for several decades. In 1952, the NAACP brought five cases before the Supreme Court that directly challenged the precedent established in Plessy v. Ferguson. Due to the

Integrated classroom at Anacostia High School, Washington, DC, 1957.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-U9-1033-16

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divided opinion of the Court on whether or not it was possible to overturn this ruling, the justices called for additional hearings at a later date. Following several setbacks, including the death of Chief Justice Frederick Vinson, the Supreme Court agreed to hear each case once again during its 1953 term. The five cases brought before the Supreme Court illustrated that many public schools in America were not providing equal facilities and materials to African American students. Thurgood Marshall, the NAACP’s lead attorney, argued that the “separate but equal” rule violated the Fourteenth Amendment to the Constitution, which granted

citizenship to all citizens regardless of color, and provided equal protection under the law. On May 17, 1954, Chief Justice Earl Warren delivered the unanimous ruling of the Court, stating that the segregation of public schools was in fact a violation of the Fourteenth Amendment and was therefore unconstitutional. This historic decision ended the “separate but equal” rule that had been in place for nearly six decades. The Court’s opinion in this landmark case helped expand the civil rights movement in the United States, advancing the idea that every citizen deserves America’s promise of equality and justice under the law.

ExcErpts
…We come then to the question presented: Does segregation of children in public schools solely on the basis of race, even though the physical facilities and other “tangible” factors may be equal, deprive the children of the minority group of equal educational opportunities? We believe that it does....To separate them from others of similar age and qualifications solely because of their race generates a feeling of inferiority as to their status in the community that may affect their heart and minds in a way unlikely ever to be undone.… We conclude that in the field of public education the doctrine of “separate but equal” has no place. Separate educational facilities are inherently unequal….

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Presidential Statements on
he United States has a long, cherished history as a welcoming country and the contributions of immigrants continue to enrich the nation. While our citizens come from different backgrounds and cultures, Americans are bound together by shared ideals, based on individual freedom and the rule of law. American presidents, beginning with George Washington, have acknowledged the contributions of immigrants and regularly spoken about the importance of responsible citizenship.

Citizenship & Immigration
Speaking on behalf of the United States and its citizens, presidential speeches are often eloquent and endearing, conveying the feelings of the nation. The following section includes a collection of presidential quotes on citizenship and the important contributions of immigrants. As you read, note that throughout history, U.S. presidents have expressed a consistent message on these two themes.

T

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GeorGe WashinGton
“The bosom of America is open to receive not only the Opulent and respectable Stranger, but the oppressed and persecuted of all Nations And Religions; whom we shall welcome to a participation of all our rights and privileges, if by decency and propriety of conduct they appear to merit the enjoyment.” H 1783

President George Washington.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-H824-T-P01-016

thomas Jefferson
“Born in other countries, yet believing you could be happy in this, our laws acknowledge, as they should do, your right to join us in society, conforming, as I doubt not you will do, to our established rules. That these rules shall be as equal as prudential considerations will admit, will certainly be the aim of our legislatures, general and particular.” H 1801
President Thomas Jefferson.
Courtesy of the Independence National Historical Park Collection, Philadelphia, PA

abraham LincoLn
“Let us at all times remember that all American citizens are brothers of a common country, and should dwell together in the bonds of fraternal feeling.” H 1860
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ULysses s. Grant
“The immigrant is not a citizen of any State or Territory upon his arrival, but comes here to become a citizen of a great Republic, free to change his residence at will, to enjoy the blessings of a protecting Government, where all are equal before the law, and to add to the national wealth by his industry. On his arrival he does not know States or corporations, but confides implicitly in the protecting arm of the great, free country of which he has heard so much before leaving his native land.” H 1872

President Ulysses S. Grant.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-13018

“The United States wisely, freely, and liberally offers its citizenship to all who may come in good faith to reside within its limits on their complying with certain prescribed reasonable and simple formalities and conditions. Among the highest duties of the Government is that to afford firm, sufficient, and equal protection to all its citizens, whether native born or naturalized.” H 1874

Grover cLeveLand
“Heretofore we have welcomed all who came to us from other lands except those whose moral or physical condition or history threatened danger to our national welfare and safety. Relying upon the zealous watchfulness of our people to prevent injury to our political and social fabric, we have encouraged those coming from foreign countries to cast their lot with us and join in the development of our vast domain, securing in return a share in the blessings of American citizenship.” H 1897

President Grover Cleveland.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-124416

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theodore rooseveLt
“The good citizen is the man who, whatever his wealth or his poverty, strives manfully to do his duty to himself, to his family, to his neighbor, to the State; who is incapable of the baseness which manifests itself either in arrogance or in envy, but who while demanding justice for himself is no less scrupulous to do justice to others. It is because

President Theodore Roosevelt.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-13026

the average citizen, rich or poor, is of just this type that we have cause for our profound faith in the future of the Republic.” H 1903 “We are all of us Americans, and nothing else; we all have equal rights and equal obligations; we form part of one people, in the face of all other nations, paying allegiance only to one flag; and a wrong to any one of us is a wrong to all the rest of us.” H 1917
Arriving in the United States.
Courtesy of the USCIS Historical Library

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WoodroW WiLson
“This is the only country in the world which experiences this constant and repeated rebirth. Other countries depend upon the multiplication of their own native people. This country is constantly drinking strength out of new sources by the voluntary association with it of great bodies of strong men and forward-looking women out of other lands. And so by the gift of the free will of independent people it is being constantly renewed from President Woodrow Wilson. generation to generation by the same process by which it Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-107577 was originally created….You have just taken an oath of allegiance to the United States. Of allegiance to whom? Of allegiance to no one, unless it is God—certainly not of allegiance to those who temporarily represent this great Government. You have taken an oath of allegiance to a great ideal, to a great body of principles, to a great hope of the human race.” H 1915 “We came to America, either ourselves or in the persons of our ancestors, to better the ideals of men, to make them see finer things than they had seen before, to get rid of the things that divide and to make sure of the things that unite.” H 1915

Warren G. hardinG
“Nothing is more important to America than

citizenship; there is more assurance of our future in the individual character of our citizens than in any proposal I, and all the wise advisers I can gather, can ever put into effect in Washington.” H 1920

President Warren G. Harding.

Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-106243

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caLvin cooLidGe
“American citizenship is a high estate. He who holds it is the peer of kings. It has been secured only by untold toil and effort. It will be maintained by no other method. It demands the best that men and women have to give. But it likewise awards its partakers the best that there is on earth.” H 1924

President Calvin Coolidge.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, ppmsc 03670

“Whether one traces his Americanism back three centuries to the Mayflower, or three years to the steerage, is not half Asian immigrants arriving at Immigration Station on Angel Island near San Francisco, CA, 1931. Courtesy of the National Archives, College Park, MD so important as whether his Americanism of today is real and genuine. No matter by what various crafts we came here, we are all now in the same boat.” H 1925

frankLin d. rooseveLt
“The principle on which this country was founded and by which it has always been governed is that Americanism is a matter of the mind and heart; Americanism is not, and never was, a matter of race and ancestry. A good American is one who is loyal to this country and to our creed of liberty and democracy.” H 1943

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harry s. trUman
“There is no more precious possession today than United States citizenship. A nation is no stronger than its citizenry. With many problems facing us daily in this perplexing and trying era, it is vital that we have a unity of purpose—to the end that freedom, justice, and opportunity, good will, and happiness may be assured ourselves and peoples everywhere.” H 1948
President Harry S.Truman.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-98170

John f. kennedy
“Everywhere immigrants have enriched and strengthened the fabric of American life.” H 1959
Naturalization ceremony in Milwaukee, WI, 1963.
Milwaukee Journal photo courtesy of the USCIS Historical Library

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Lyndon b. Johnson
“Our citizens—naturalized or native-born—must also seek to refresh and improve their knowledge of how our government operates under the Constitution and how they can participate in it. Only in this way can they assume the full responsibilities of citizenship and make our government more truly of, by, and for the people.” H 1967

President Lyndon B. Johnson.

Courtesy of the Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum

ronaLd reaGan
“It’s long been my belief that America is a chosen place, a rich and fertile continent placed by some Divine Providence here between the two great oceans, and only those who really wanted to get here would get here. Only those who most yearned for freedom would make the terrible trek that it took to get here. America has drawn the stoutest hearts from every corner of the world, from every nation of the world. And that was lucky for America, President Ronald Reagan. Courtesy of the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library because if it was going to endure and grow and protect its freedoms for 200 years, it was going to need stout hearts.” H 1984 “I received a letter just before I left office from a man. I don’t know why he chose to write it, but I’m glad he did. He wrote that you can go to live in France, but you can’t become a Frenchman. You can go to live in Germany or Italy, but you can’t become a German, an Italian. He went through Turkey, Greece, Japan and other countries. But he said anyone, from any corner of the world, can come to live in the United States and become an American.” H 1990
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GeorGe h. W. bUsh
“Nearly all Americans have ancestors who braved the oceans—liberty-loving risk takers in search of an ideal—the largest voluntary migrations in recorded history. Across the Pacific, across the Atlantic, they came from every point on the compass—many passing beneath the Statue of Liberty—with fear and vision, with sorrow and adventure, fleeing tyranny or terror, seeking haven, and all seeking hope…Immigration is not just a link to America’s past; it’s also a bridge to America’s future.” H 1990

President George H. W. Bush.
Courtesy of the George H. W. Bush Presidential Library

WiLLiam J. cLinton
“More than any other nation on Earth, America has constantly drawn strength and spirit from wave after wave of immigrants. In each generation, they have proved to be the most restless, the most adventurous, the most innovative, the most industrious of people. Bearing different memories, honoring different heritages, they have strengthened our economy, enriched our culture, renewed our promise of freedom and opportunity for all....And President William J. Clinton. Courtesy of the William J. Clinton Presidential Library together, immigrants and citizens alike, let me say we must recommit ourselves to the general duties of citizenship. Not just immigrants, but every American should know what’s in our Constitution and understand our shared history. Not just immigrants, but every American should participate in our democracy by voting, by volunteering and by running for office. Not just immigrants, but every American, on our campuses and in our communities, should serve—community service breeds good citizenship. And not just immigrants, but every American should reject identity politics that seeks to separate us, not bring us together.” H 1998
83

GeorGe W. bUsh
“America has never been united by blood or birth or soil. We are bound by ideals that move us beyond our backgrounds, lift us above our interests and teach us what it means to be citizens. Every child must be taught these principles. Every citizen must uphold them. And every immigrant, by embracing these ideals, makes our country more, not less, American.” H 2001 “America’s welcoming society is more than a cultural Official White House Photo tradition, it is a fundamental promise of our democracy. Our Constitution does not limit citizenship by background or birth. Instead, our nation is bound together by a shared love of liberty and a conviction that all people are created with dignity and value. Through the generations, Americans have upheld that vision by welcoming new citizens from across the globe—and that has made us stand apart.” H 2006
President George W. Bush.

Naturalization ceremony in San Diego, CA, July 4, 2005.
Courtesy of the USCIS Office of Communications

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hroughout our nation’s history, foreign-born men and women have come to the United States, taken the Oath of Allegiance, and contributed greatly to their new communities and country. The United States welcomes individuals from nations near and far and immigrants have played an important role in establishing this country as the “land of opportunity.” America takes great pride in being known as a “nation of immigrants.” The following section provides examples of individuals who have

T

Prominent Foreign-Born Americans
come to the United States, become citizens by choice, and left a lasting impression on our society. This list is by no means all encompassing, as a comprehensive record would be nearly impossible. Instead, it serves the purpose of highlighting a selection of foreign-born Americans, coming from a wide range of countries, who have had a significant impact on the United States as we know it today.

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John Paul Jones (1747–1792)
American naval officer. John Paul was born July 6, 1747, in Kirkbean, Kirkcudbrightshire, Scotland (now Dumfries and Galloway, Scotland). At age 21, he commanded his first ship and quickly became a very successful merchant skipper in the West Indies. In the mid 1770s, he moved to the British colonies in North America, adopting the last name “Jones.” At the beginning of the American Revolution, he joined the Continental navy and was “John Paul Jones” by George Bagby Matthews. Courtesy of the U.S. Senate commissioned first lieutenant. During the war, Jones commanded several vessels, including the Duc de Duras, which he renamed Bon Homme Richard in honor of Benjamin Franklin’s Poor Richard’s Almanack. Aboard this ship on September 23, 1779, Jones engaged the British vessel HMS Serapis off the coast of England. Jones defeated the HMS Serapis in one of the most storied battles in United States naval history. He is now entombed beneath the chapel of the U.S. Naval Academy in Annapolis, Maryland.

The Bon Homme Richard.
Courtesy of the National Archives, NARA File # 019-N-10430

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alexander hamilton (1757–1804)
First Secretary of the Treasury, serving under President George Washington. Hamilton was born January 11, 1757, on the island of Nevis, British West Indies (now part of the independent country of Saint Kitts and Nevis). Hamilton moved to America in 1772, where he attended preparatory school in Elizabethtown, New Jersey. At the outbreak of the American Revolution in 1776, Hamilton entered the Continental army in New York as captain of artillery. In 1777, he was appointed aidede-camp to General George Washington. Hamilton was one of three men responsible for the Federalist Papers, and was a guiding spirit behind the adoption of the U.S. Constitution. With the adoption of the Constitution in 1787, Hamilton, like all other residents of the new nation, became an original “founding” citizen of the United States. He was also a founder and leader of the first political party in the United States, the Federalists.

William a. leidesdorff (1810–1848)
American businessman and first African American diplomat. Leidesdorff was born in the Danish West Indies (now the U.S. Virgin Islands) to a Danish man and an African woman in 1810. He was raised by a wealthy English plantation owner and obtained a formal education while in the Danish West Indies. Upon his caretaker’s untimely death, he moved to the United States, settling in New Orleans, Louisiana. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1834. Leidesdorff became active in the mercantile industry and soon developed a trade route between Yerba Buena (now San Francisco), California, and Honolulu, Hawaii. In 1844, while living in California (then part of Mexico), he became a Mexican citizen in order to increase his landholdings. On October 29, 1845, Thomas O. Larkin, U.S. consul in Monterey, California, appointed Leidesdorff as vice consul at Yerba Buena. Leidesdorff secretly helped the United William Leidesdorff. States annex the region of California. His Courtesy of the Virtual Museum of the City of service as vice consul lasted until the U.S. San Francisco occupation of northern California in July 1846. 87

alexander Graham Bell (1847–1922)
American inventor, introduced the telephone in 1876. Bell was born March 3, 1847, in Edinburgh, Scotland. In 1872, he moved to the United States, where he taught at Boston University. Bell became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1882. At an early age, he was fascinated with the idea of transmitting speech. While working with his assistant, Thomas Watson, in Boston, Bell shared his idea of what would become the telephone. In 1876, Bell introduced the telephone to Alexander Graham Bell. the world at the Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-14759 Centennial Exposition in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The invention of the telephone led to the organization of the Bell Telephone Company. Bell was also responsible for inventing the photophone in 1880, an instrument that transmitted speech by light rays. In addition, he was a co-founder of the National Geographic Society, and served as its president from 1898 to 1904.

Alexander Graham Bell’s first telephone.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-D420-2988

88

JosePh Pulitzer (1847–1911)
American newspaper publisher. Pulitzer was born April 10, 1847, in Makó, Hungary. He immigrated to the United States in 1864 to serve in the American Civil War, joining the First New York Cavalry. Pulitzer began his newspaper career as an employee of a German-language daily in St. Louis, Missouri. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1867. After buying two St. Louis newspapers and merging them into the successful St. Louis Post-Dispatch in 1878, Pulitzer purchased the New York World in 1883. He shifted the newspaper’s focus toward human-interest stories, scandals, and fighting corruption as the World’s circulation grew from 15,000 to 600,000—the largest in the United States. Before his death in 1911, Pulitzer pledged money to set up a school of journalism at Columbia University in New York as well as the Pulitzer Prizes for journalists. The Pulitzer Prizes are now considered the most prestigious awards in print journalism.

frances x. caBrini (1850–1917)
American humanitarian and social worker, first U.S. citizen to be canonized by the Catholic Church. Cabrini was born July 15, 1850, in Sant’Angelo Lodigiano, Italy. After taking vows to become a nun in 1877, she began teaching at an orphanage in Codogno, Italy. In 1889, Pope Leo XIII sent her to New York to begin ministering to the growing number of new immigrants in the United States. She became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1909. Throughout her lifetime, Cabrini worked with all those in need, including the poor, the uneducated, and the sick. She helped organize schools, orphanages, and adult education classes for immigrants in her nearly forty years of ministry. In 1946, Pope Pius XII canonized her, making her the first U.S. citizen to be canonized. Cabrini is now the Catholic Church’s patron saint of immigrants. Saint Frances Xavier Cabrini.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-103568

89

michael PuPin (1858–1935)
American physicist and inventor. Pupin was born October 4, 1858, in Idvor, Austria-Hungary (now Serbia). In 1874, he moved to the United States, settling in New York. Pupin graduated from Columbia University with a degree in physics in 1883. He became a naturalMichael Pupin. ized U.S citizen that Public domain photo same year. In 1889, Pupin obtained his doctorate from the University of Berlin. Upon graduation, he returned to Columbia University where he taught for more than forty years. Pupin was well known for his improvement of longdistance telephone and telegraph communication. Throughout his career, he received thirty-four patents for his inventions. In 1924, he won the Pulitzer Prize for his autobiography, From Immigrant to Inventor.

solomon carter fuller (1872–1953)
American psychiatrist, first known African American psychiatrist in the United States. Fuller was born in Monrovia, Liberia, in 1872. In 1889, he moved to the United States to attend Livingston College in Salisbury, North Carolina. He received his Solomon Carter Fuller.
Courtesy of Boston University

90

M.D. from Boston University’s School of Medicine in 1894, and began teaching there in 1899. Fuller spent a year in Munich, Germany, studying psychiatry. Much of his research centered on degenerative brain diseases including Alzheimer’s disease, which he attributed to causes other than arteriosclerosis, a theory that was fully supported by medical researchers in 1953. Fuller became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1920.

alBert einstein (1879–1955)
American scientist and Nobel laureate in physics, widely considered to be the greatest scientist of the twentieth century. Einstein was born March 14, 1879, at Ulm, in Württemberg, Germany. In 1921, he received the Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery of the law of the photoelectric effect. Einstein’s special theory of relativity containing the famous equation E=mc2 also won him international praise. When the Nazis came to power in Germany in 1933, he immigrated to the United States and joined the newly formed Institute for Advanced Studies at Princeton University. Einstein became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1940.

Albert Einstein receiving his certificate of American citizenship, October 1, 1940.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-DIG-ppmsca-05649

91

iGor stravinsky (1882–1971)
American composer. Stravinsky was born June 17, 1882, in Oranienbaum, Russia (now Lomonosov, Russia). His early career was spent composing in Switzerland and Paris, France. Stravinsky’s works include The Rite of Spring (1913), The Soldier’s Tale (1918), Oedipus Rex (1927), and Perséphone (1934). In 1939, he left Europe and settled in the United States. Stravinsky became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1945. The various styles of music he experimented with made Stravinsky one of the most influential composers of his time. He is now widely regarded as one of the greatest composers of the twentieth century.

felix frankfurter (1882–1965)
American legal scholar and U.S. Supreme Court Justice. Frankfurter was born November 15, 1882, in Vienna, Austria-Hungary (now Austria). In 1894, he immigrated to the United States and attended both City College of New York and Harvard Law School. By virtue of his father’s naturalization, Frankfurter became a naturalized U.S. citizen. He went

Justice Felix Frankfurter.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-36966

92

on to serve as an assistant U.S. attorney in New York State (1906-1910) and a legal officer in the Bureau of Insular Affairs (1911-1914). From 1914 to 1939, Frankfurter was a professor at Harvard Law School. In 1939, President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed him an associate justice to the U.S. Supreme Court.

knute rockne (1888–1931)
American football player and coach. Rockne was born March 4, 1888, in Voss, Norway. His father brought the family to the United States in 1893. By virtue of his father’s naturalization, Rockne became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1896. As the head football coach of the University of Notre Dame from 1918 to 1930, he achieved the greatest winning percentage of all time at .881 percent. During his years as head coach, Rockne collected 105 victories, twelve losses, five ties, and six national championships. He also coached Notre Dame to five undefeated seasons. Both as a player and a coach, Rockne popularized the use of the forward pass, which significantly changed how the game was played.

Knute Rockne, seated, at a Notre Dame football practice in the late 1920s.
Courtesy of the University of Notre Dame

93

irvinG Berlin (1888–1989)
American composer and songwriter. Berlin was born May 11, 1888, in Mogilyov, Russia (now Belarus). In 1893, his family immigrated to the United States. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1918. Berlin wrote music and lyrics for Broadway shows such as Annie Get Your Gun (1946) and Miss Liberty (1949), as well as for films such as Holiday Inn (1942), Blue Skies (1946), and Easter Parade (1948). He also wrote popular songs Irving Berlin. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-37541 such as “There’s No Business Like Show Business,” “God Bless America,” and the holiday classic “White Christmas.” In 1955, President Dwight D. Eisenhower recognized Berlin’s patriotic songs by presenting him with a special medal authorized by the U.S. Congress. In 1986, Berlin was one of twelve naturalized U.S. citizens to receive the Medal of Liberty from President Ronald Reagan.

frank caPra (1897–1991)
American film director and producer. Capra was born May 18, 1897, in Palermo, Italy. In 1903, his family immigrated to the United States, 94

settling in Los Angeles. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1920. Capra is known for directing such films as Mr. Smith Goes to Washington (1939), It’s a Wonderful Life (1946), and Mr. Deeds Goes to Town (1936), for which he won the Academy Award for Best Director. Although it was considered a box office failure upon its release, his 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life has become one of the most beloved holiday films of all time.

daliP sinGh saund (1899–1973)
American congressman and first Asian American to serve in the U.S. Congress. Saund was born September 20, 1899, in Chhajulwadi, Punjab, India. He graduated from the University of Punjab in 1919 and moved to the United States the following year to attend the University of California. Saund earned both a master’s degree and a doctorate from the University of California. He then became a successful lettuce farmer in the Imperial Valley of California. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1949. In 1952, Saund was elected judge of Justice Court for the Westmoreland Judicial Dalip Singh Saund. District in California’s Imperial Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-102603 County, a position he was denied two years earlier because he had not been a U.S. citizen for more than a year. In 1956, he was elected to represent the 29th Congressional District of California in the U.S. House of Representatives, becoming the first Asian American to serve in the U.S. Congress.

95

marlene dietrich (1901–1992)
American actress and singer. Dietrich was born December 27, 1901, in Berlin, Germany. She began her acting career in Berlin where she quickly became popular in the theater and in silent films. In 1929, she was cast in the film The Blue Angel (1930) by American director Josef von Sternberg. Her performance was widely acclaimed and Dietrich promptly moved to the United States. She starred in a variety of films during her career, including Morocco (1930), The Devil Is a Woman (1935), Desire (1936), and Judgment at Nuremberg (1961). She became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1939. During World War II, Dietrich made over 500 appearances before American troops overseas.

BoB hoPe (1903–2003)
American entertainer. Hope was born May 29, 1903, in Eltham, Great Britain. In 1907, his father moved the family to Cleveland, Ohio. In 1920, by virtue of his father’s naturalization, “Bob”—the name he took for the rest of his life—became a U.S. citizen. Throughout his career, he appeared in a variety of films and television specials, and performed many shows for American Bob Hope.
Courtesy of the Bob Hope Collection

96

troops overseas, including World War II (1939–1945), the Korean War (1950–1953), the Vietnam War (1959–1975), and the Persian Gulf War (1991). In 1997, President William Clinton named him an honorary military veteran.

suBrahmanyan chandrasekhar (1910–1995)
American scientist and Nobel laureate. Chandrasekhar was born October 19, 1910, in Lahore, India (now Pakistan). He earned a bachelor’s degree in physics at Presidency College in Madras, India, and a doctorate from Trinity College in England. Chandrasekhar immigrated to the United States in 1937, where he joined the faculty of the University of Chicago. He became Subrahmanyan Chandrasekhar. a naturalized U.S. Courtesy of the University of Chicago citizen in 1953. Chandrasekhar was the first to theorize that not all stars end up as white dwarf stars, but those retaining mass above a certain limit, known today as “Chandrasekhar’s limit,” undergo further collapse. In 1983, he was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics for his theoretical studies of the physical processes important to the structure and evolution of stars. In 1999, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) named one of its four “Great Observatories” orbiting the Earth in space for Chandrasekhar.

97

kenneth B. clark (1914–2005)
American psychologist. Clark was born July 14, 1914, in the Panama Canal Zone. In 1919, he moved to the United States, settling in New York with his mother and sister. He became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1931. Clark obtained a bachelor’s degree from Howard University in 1935 and a master’s degree in 1936. He went on to earn a doctorate in experimental psychology from Kenneth B. Clark. Columbia University Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-115757 in 1940, becoming the first African American to earn a doctorate in psychology at the school. In 1946, he and his wife Mamie founded the Northside Center for Child Development in Harlem, New York, where they began conducting research on racial bias in education. A 1950 report from Clark on racial discrimination was cited in the landmark Brown v. Board of Education Supreme Court decision, which ruled public school segregation unconstitutional. Clark was also the first African American to serve as president of the American Psychological Association. In 1986, he was one of twelve naturalized U.S. citizens to receive the Medal of Liberty from President Ronald Reagan.

98

celia cruz (1925–2003)
American singer, known as the “Queen of Salsa.” Cruz was born October 21, 1925, in Havana, Cuba. She became famous in Cuba in the 1950s, singing with the band La Sonora Matancera. Cruz left Cuba for the United States in 1960, after Fidel Castro came to power. She was soon headlining the Hollywood Palladium in Celia Cruz. Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-118256 California and Carnegie Hall in New York. Cruz became a naturalized U.S. citizen in 1961. She appeared in several films, including The Mambo Kings (1992) and The Perez Family (1995), and sang a duet with David Byrne for the 1986 film Something Wild. During her long career, Cruz received a Smithsonian Lifetime Achievement Award, a National Medal of the Arts, and honorary doctorates from Yale University and the University of Miami.

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Naturalization ceremony in the Rotunda of the National Archives in Washington, DC, December 15, 2005.
Courtesy of the USCIS Office of Communications

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U.S. CitizenShip and immigration ServiCeS and the offiCe of CitizenShip
would like to extend its appreciation to the following organizations for their support and assistance in the development of this publication:

Acknowledgements
Center for CiviC edUCation
http://www.civiced.org

national endowment for the hUmanitieS
http://www.neh.gov

national ConStitUtion Center
http://www.constitutioncenter.org

USCiS hiStoriCal referenCe library
http://www.uscis.gov

marilyn zoidiS,
formerly Senior Curator, Star-Spangled Banner Project, Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History http://americanhistory.si.edu

“Our nation is not bound together by common ties of blood, race, or religion; we are united instead by our devotion to shared ideals. So each generation of Americans—both native-born and immigrants—must learn our great founding principles, how our institutions came into being, how they work, and what our rights and responsibilities are. For this reason, the National Endowment for the Humanities is proud to support the development of The Citizen’s Almanac. This valuable resource will help new Americans become educated and thoughtful citizens who can fully participate in our government of, by, and for the people.”
— Bruce Cole, Chairman, National Endowment for the Humanities

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Memories of the Occasion

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“With malice toward none; with charity for all; with firmness in the right, as God gives us to see the right, let us strive on to finish the work we are in; to bind up the nation’s wounds; to care for him who shall have borne the battle, and for his widow, and his orphan—to do all which may achieve and cherish a just and a lasting peace, among ourselves, and with all nations.” — Abraham Lincoln’s Second Inaugural Address, March 4, 1865.
Now inscribed in the chamber of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC.

“Lincoln at Independence Hall” (1908) by Jean Leon Gerome Ferris.
Courtesy of the Library of Congress, LC-USZ62-101376

History-Study & Teaching/Civics

T Citizen’s Almanac
Americans by birth or by choice, we are all united by the common civic values expressed in our founding documents, the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States. This common civic identity binds us together as one nation. The Citizen’s Almanac, a collection of America’s most cherished symbols of freedom and liberty, serves as a modern day lifeline to our rich civic history. From historic speeches to landmark Supreme Court decisions, The Citizen’s Almanac offers a fascinating look into the fundamental civic values that have helped shape the country we know today. In The Citizen’s Almanac, both native-born and naturalized citizens will find important information on the rights and responsibilities associated with United States citizenship. Becoming an active participant in our system of government further strengthens our great democracy. As former Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis once said, “The only title in our democracy superior to that of President [is] the title of citizen.” Through civic participation and further learning about our country, its founding ideals, achievements, and history, America’s newest generation of citizens will enjoy the fruits of responsible citizenship for years to come.

I S B N 978-0-16-078003-5

90000

http://www.uscis.gov

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780160 780035

The Declaration of Independence & the Constitution of the United States

M-654 (rev. 07/08)

The Declaration of Independence & the Constitution of the United States

MeSSage froM The DIreCTor “The sacred rights of mankind are not to be rummaged for, among old parchments, or musty records.They are written, as with a sun beam in the whole volume of human nature, by the hand of the divinity itself; and can never be erased or obscured by mortal power.” — Alexander Hamilton, 1775
The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution of the United States are the two most important, and enduring documents in our Nation’s history. It has been said that “the Declaration of Independence was the promise; the Constitution was the fulfillment.” More than 200 years ago, our Founding Fathers set out to establish a government based on individual rights and the rule of law. The Declaration of Independence, which officially broke all political ties between the American colonies and Great Britain, set forth the ideas and principles behind a just and fair government, and the Constitution outlined how this government would function. Our founding documents have withstood the test of time, rising to the challenge each time they were called upon. Make no mistake, we have been presented with a timeless framework for self-government, but in order to preserve this wonderful gift, we must hold these principles close to our hearts. I encourage you to read and understand these documents. I promise you will be nothing short of inspired. Director U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

“The basis of our political systems is the right of the people to make and to alter their Constitutions of Government. But the Constitution which at any time exists, ‘till changed by an explicit and authentic act of the whole People is sacredly obligatory upon all.” — George Washington, 1796

“The Declaration of Independence...[is the] declaratory charter of our rights, and of the rights of man.” — Thomas Jefferson, 1819

The DeCLaraTIoN of INDePeNDeNCe
The Unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America

Action of Second Continental Congress, July 4, 1776

WheN in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one People to dissolve the Political Bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the Powers of the earth, the separate and equal Station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent Respect to the Opinions of Mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the Separation. We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness—That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Powers from the Consent of the Governed, that whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its Foundation on such Principles, and organizing its Powers in such Form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient Causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that Mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the Forms to which they are accustomed. But when


a long Train of Abuses and Usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their Right, it is their Duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future Security. Such has been the patient Sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the Necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great-Britain is a history of repeated Injuries and Usurpations, all having in direct Object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid World. he has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public Good. he has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing Importance, unless suspended in their Operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. he has refused to pass other Laws for the Accommodation of large Districts of People, unless those People would relinquish the Right of Representation in the Legislature, a Right inestimable to them, and formidable to Tyrants only. he has called together Legislative Bodies at Places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the Depository of their public Records, for the sole Purpose of fatiguing them into Compliance with his Measures. he has dissolved Representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly Firmness his Invasions on the Rights of the People.


he has refused for a long Time, after such Dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative Powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the Dangers of Invasion from without, and Convulsions within. he has endeavoured to prevent the Population of these States; for that Purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their Migrations hither, and raising the Conditions of new Appropriations of Lands. he has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary Powers. he has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the Tenure of their Offices, and the Amount and Payment of their Salaries. he has erected a Multitude of new Offices, and sent hither Swarms of Officers to harrass our People, and eat out their Substance. he has kept among us, in Times of Peace, Standing Armies, without the consent of our Legislatures. he has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil Power. he has combined with others to subject us to a Jurisdiction foreign to our Constitution, and unacknowledged by our Laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation: For quartering large Bodies of Armed Troops among us:


For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from Punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States: For cutting off our Trade with all Parts of the World: For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent: For depriving us, in many Cases, of the Benefits of Trial by Jury: For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended Offences: For abolishing the free System of english Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an arbitrary Government, and enlarging its Boundaries, so as to render it at once an example and fit Instrument for introducing the same absolute Rule into these Colonies: For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments: For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with Power to legislate for us in all Cases whatsoever. he has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us. he has plundered our Seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our Towns, and destroyed the Lives of our People. he is, at this Time, transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the Works of Death, Desolation, and Tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty and Perfidy, scarcely


paralleled in the most barbarous Ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized Nation. he has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their Friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands. he has excited domestic Insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the Inhabitants of our Frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known Rule of Warfare, is an undistinguished Destruction of all Ages, Sexes and Conditions. In every stage of these Oppressions we have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble Terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated Injury. A Prince, whose Character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the Ruler of a free People. Nor have we been wanting in Attentions to our British Brethren. We have warned them from Time to Time of Attempts by their Legislature to extend an unwarrantable Jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the Circumstances of our emigration and Settlement here. We have appealed to their native Justice and Magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the Ties of our common Kindred to disavow these Usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our Connections and Correspondence. They too have been deaf to the Voice of Justice and of Consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the Necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we


hold the rest of Mankind, enemies in War, in Peace, Friends. We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the World for the Rectitude of our Intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly Publish and Declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political Connection between them and the State of Great-Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. —And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm Reliance on the Protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred honor.
Signed by ORDeR and in BehALF of the CONGReSS, JOhN hANCOCK, President Attest. ChARLeS ThOMSON, Secretary

Signers of the Declaration of Independence
Georgia: Button Gwinnett Lyman hall George Walton North Carolina: William hooper Joseph hewes John Penn South Carolina: edward Rutledge Thomas heyward, Jr. Thomas Lynch, Jr. Arthur Middleton Massachusetts: Samuel Adams John Adams Robert Treat Paine elbridge Gerry John hancock Maryland: Samuel Chase William Paca Thomas Stone Charles Carroll of Carrollton Virginia: George Wythe Richard henry Lee Thomas Jefferson Benjamin harrison Thomas Nelson, Jr. Francis Lightfoot Lee Carter Braxton Pennsylvania: Robert Morris Benjamin Rush Benjamin Franklin John Morton George Clymer James Smith George Taylor James Wilson George Ross Delaware: Caesar Rodney George Read Thomas McKean New York: William Floyd Philip Livingston Francis Lewis Lewis Morris New Jersey: Richard Stockton John Witherspoon Francis hopkinson John hart Abraham Clark New Hampshire: Josiah Bartlett Matthew Thornton William Whipple Rhode Island: Stephen hopkins William ellery Connecticut: Roger Sherman Samuel huntington William Williams Oliver Wolcott





The CoNSTITUTIoN of The UNITeD STaTeS of aMerICa
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, 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. article. I. Section. 1. All legislative Powers herein granted shall be vested in a Congress of the United States, which shall consist of a Senate and house of Representatives. Section. 2. The house of Representatives shall be composed of Members chosen every second Year by the People of the several States, and the Electors in each State shall have the Qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous Branch of the State Legislature. No Person shall be a Representative who shall not have attained to the Age of twenty five Years, and been seven Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State in which he shall be chosen. [Representatives and direct Taxes shall be apportioned among the several States which may be included within this Union, according to their respective Numbers, which shall be determined by adding to the whole Number of free Persons, including those bound to Service for a Term of
 

Years, and excluding Indians not taxed, three fifths of all other Persons.]1 The actual enumeration shall be made within three Years after the first Meeting of the Congress of the United States, and within every subsequent Term of ten Years, in such Manner as they shall by Law direct. The number of Representatives shall not exceed one for every thirty Thousand, but each State shall have at Least one Representative; and until such enumeration shall be made, the State of New hampshire shall be entitled to chuse three, Massachusetts eight, Rhode-Island and Providence Plantations one, Connecticut five, New-York six, New Jersey four, Pennsylvania eight, Delaware one, Maryland six, Virginia ten, North Carolina five, South Carolina five, and Georgia three. When vacancies happen in the Representation from any State, the executive Authority thereof shall issue Writs of Election to fill such Vacancies. The house of Representatives shall chuse their Speaker and other Officers; and shall have the sole Power of Impeachment. Section. 3. The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, [chosen by the Legislature thereof,]2 for six Years; and each Senator shall have one Vote. Immediately after they shall be assembled in Consequence of the first Election, they shall be divided as equally as may be into three Classes. The Seats of the Senators of the first Class shall be vacated at the expiration of the second Year, of
1 2

the second Class at the expiration of the fourth Year, and of the third Class at the expiration of the sixth Year, so that one third may be chosen every second Year; [and if Vacancies happen by Resignation, or otherwise, during the Recess of the Legislature of any State, the executive thereof may make temporary Appointments until the next Meeting of the Legislature, which shall then fill such Vacancies.] No Person shall be a Senator who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty Years, and been nine Years a Citizen of the United States, and who shall not, when elected, be an Inhabitant of that State for which he shall be chosen. The Vice President of the United States shall be President of the Senate, but shall have no Vote, unless they be equally divided. The Senate shall chuse their other Officers, and also a President pro tempore, in the Absence of the Vice President, or when he shall exercise the Office of President of the United States. The Senate shall have the sole Power to try all Impeachments. When sitting for that Purpose, they shall be on Oath or Affirmation. When the President of the United States is tried, the Chief Justice shall preside: And no Person shall be convicted without the Concurrence of two thirds of the Members present. Judgment in Cases of Impeachment shall not extend further than to removal from Office, and disqualification to hold and enjoy any Office of honor, Trust or Profit under the United States:


Changed by section 2 of the Fourteenth Amendment. Changed by the Seventeenth Amendment.

Changed by the Seventeenth Amendment.

0



but the Party convicted shall nevertheless be liable and subject to Indictment, Trial, Judgment and Punishment, according to Law. Section. 4. The Times, Places and Manner of holding elections for Senators and Representatives, shall be prescribed in each State by the Legislature thereof; but the Congress may at any time by Law make or alter such Regulations, except as to the Places of chusing Senators. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every Year, and such Meeting shall be [on the first Monday in December,]4 unless they shall by Law appoint a different Day. Section. 5. each house shall be the Judge of the Elections, Returns and Qualifications of its own Members, and a Majority of each shall constitute a Quorum to do Business; but a smaller Number may adjourn from day to day, and may be authorized to compel the Attendance of absent Members, in such Manner, and under such Penalties as each house may provide. each house may determine the Rules of its Proceedings, punish its Members for disorderly Behaviour, and, with the Concurrence of two thirds, expel a Member. each house shall keep a Journal of its Proceedings, and from time to time publish the same, excepting such Parts as may in their Judgment require Secrecy; and the Yeas and Nays of the Members of either house on any question shall, at the Desire of one fifth of those Present, be entered on the Journal.
4

Changed by section 2 of the Twentieth Amendment.

Neither house, during the Session of Congress, shall, without the Consent of the other, adjourn for more than three days, nor to any other Place than that in which the two houses shall be sitting. Section. 6. The Senators and Representatives shall receive a Compensation for their Services, to be ascertained by Law, and paid out of the Treasury of the United States. They shall in all Cases, except Treason, Felony and Breach of the Peace, be privileged from Arrest during their Attendance at the Session of their respective houses, and in going to and returning from the same; and for any Speech or Debate in either house, they shall not be questioned in any other Place. No Senator or Representative shall, during the Time for which he was elected, be appointed to any civil Office under the Authority of the United States, which shall have been created, or the emoluments whereof shall have been encreased during such time; and no Person holding any Office under the United States, shall be a Member of either house during his Continuance in Office. Section. 7. All Bills for raising Revenue shall originate in the house of Representatives; but the Senate may propose or concur with Amendments as on other Bills. every Bill which shall have passed the house of Representatives and the Senate, shall, before it become a Law, be presented to the President of the United States; If he approve he shall sign it, but if not he shall return it, with his Objections to that house in which it shall have originated, who shall enter the Objections at large on their




Journal, and proceed to reconsider it. If after such Reconsideration two thirds of that house shall agree to pass the Bill, it shall be sent, together with the Objections, to the other house, by which it shall likewise be reconsidered, and if approved by two thirds of that house, it shall become a Law. But in all such Cases the Votes of both houses shall be determined by yeas and Nays, and the Names of the Persons voting for and against the Bill shall be entered on the Journal of each house respectively. If any Bill shall not be returned by the President within ten Days (Sundays excepted) after it shall have been presented to him, the Same shall be a Law, in like Manner as if he had signed it, unless the Congress by their Adjournment prevent its Return, in which Case it shall not be a Law. every Order, Resolution, or Vote to which the Concurrence of the Senate and house of Representatives may be necessary (except on a question of Adjournment) shall be presented to the President of the United States; and before the Same shall take effect, shall be approved by him, or being disapproved by him, shall be repassed by two thirds of the Senate and house of Representatives, according to the Rules and Limitations prescribed in the Case of a Bill. Section. 8. The Congress shall have Power To lay and collect Taxes, Duties, Imposts and excises, to pay the Debts and provide for the common Defence and general Welfare of the United States; but all Duties, Imposts and excises shall be uniform throughout the United States;

To borrow Money on the credit of the United States; To regulate Commerce with foreign Nations, and among the several States, and with the Indian Tribes; To establish an uniform Rule of Naturalization, and uniform Laws on the subject of Bankruptcies throughout the United States; To coin Money, regulate the Value thereof, and of foreign Coin, and fix the Standard of Weights and Measures; To provide for the Punishment of counterfeiting the Securities and current Coin of the United States; To establish Post Offices and post Roads; To promote the Progress of Science and useful Arts, by securing for limited Times to Authors and Inventors the exclusive Right to their respective Writings and Discoveries; To constitute Tribunals inferior to the supreme Court; To define and punish Piracies and Felonies committed on the high Seas, and Offences against the Law of Nations; To declare War, grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal, and make Rules concerning Captures on Land and Water; To raise and support Armies, but no Appropriation of Money to that Use shall be for a longer Term than two Years; To provide and maintain a Navy; To make Rules for the Government and Regulation of the land and naval Forces;




To provide for calling forth the Militia to execute the Laws of the Union, suppress Insurrections and repel Invasions; To provide for organizing, arming, and disciplining, the Militia, and for governing such Part of them as may be employed in the Service of the United States, reserving to the States respectively, the Appointment of the Officers, and the Authority of training the Militia according to the discipline prescribed by Congress; To exercise exclusive Legislation in all Cases whatsoever, over such District (not exceeding ten Miles square) as may, by Cession of particular States, and the Acceptance of Congress, become the Seat of the Government of the United States, and to exercise like Authority over all Places purchased by the Consent of the Legislature of the State in which the Same shall be, for the erection of Forts, Magazines, Arsenals, dock-Yards, and other needful Buildings;—And To make all Laws which shall be necessary and proper for carrying into execution the foregoing Powers, and all other Powers vested by this Constitution in the Government of the United States, or in any Department or Officer thereof. Section. 9. The Migration or Importation of such Persons as any of the States now existing shall think proper to admit, shall not be prohibited by the Congress prior to the Year one thousand eight hundred and eight, but a Tax or duty may be imposed on such Importation, not exceeding ten dollars for each Person.

The Privilege of the Writ of habeas Corpus shall not be suspended, unless when in Cases of Rebellion or Invasion the public Safety may require it. No Bill of Attainder or ex post facto Law shall be passed. No Capitation, or other direct, Tax shall be laid, unless in Proportion to the Census or enumeration herein before directed to be taken. No Tax or Duty shall be laid on Articles exported from any State. No Preference shall be given by any Regulation of Commerce or Revenue to the Ports of one State over those of another: nor shall Vessels bound to, or from, one State, be obliged to enter, clear, or pay Duties in another. No Money shall be drawn from the Treasury, but in Consequence of Appropriations made by Law; and a regular Statement and Account of the Receipts and expenditures of all public Money shall be published from time to time. No Title of Nobility shall be granted by the United States: And no Person holding any Office of Profit or Trust under them, shall, without the Consent of the Congress, accept of any present, Emolument, Office, or Title, of any kind whatever, from any King, Prince, or foreign State. Section. 10. No State shall enter into any Treaty, Alliance, or Confederation; grant Letters of Marque and Reprisal; coin Money; emit Bills of Credit; make any Thing but gold and silver Coin a Tender in Payment of Debts; pass any Bill of Attainder, ex


See the Sixteenth Amendment.





post facto Law, or Law impairing the Obligation of Contracts, or grant any Title of Nobility. No State shall, without the Consent of the Congress, lay any Imposts or Duties on Imports or exports, except what may be absolutely necessary for executing it’s inspection Laws: and the net Produce of all Duties and Imposts, laid by any State on Imports or exports, shall be for the Use of the Treasury of the United States; and all such Laws shall be subject to the Revision and Controul of the Congress. No State shall, without the Consent of Congress, lay any Duty of Tonnage, keep Troops, or Ships of War in time of Peace, enter into any Agreement or Compact with another State, or with a foreign Power, or engage in War, unless actually invaded, or in such imminent Danger as will not admit of delay. article. II. Section. 1. The executive Power shall be vested in a President of the United States of America. he shall hold his Office during the Term of four Years, and, together with the Vice President, chosen for the same Term, be elected, as follows: each State shall appoint, in such Manner as the Legislature thereof may direct, a Number of electors, equal to the whole Number of Senators and Representatives to which the State may be entitled in the Congress: but no Senator or Representative, or Person holding an Office of Trust or Profit under the United States, shall be appointed an elector. [The electors shall meet in their respective States, and vote by Ballot for two Persons, of whom


one at least shall not be an Inhabitant of the same State with themselves. And they shall make a List of all the Persons voted for, and of the Number of Votes for each; which List they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the Seat of the Government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate. The President of the Senate shall, in the Presence of the Senate and house of Representatives, open all the Certificates, and the Votes shall then be counted. The Person having the greatest Number of Votes shall be the President, if such Number be a Majority of the whole Number of electors appointed; and if there be more than one who have such Majority, and have an equal Number of Votes, then the house of Representatives shall immediately chuse by Ballot one of them for President; and if no Person have a Majority, then from the five highest on the List the said House shall in like Manner chuse the President. But in chusing the President, the Votes shall be taken by States, the Representation from each State having one Vote; A quorum for this Purpose shall consist of a Member or Members from two thirds of the States, and a Majority of all the States shall be necessary to a Choice. In every Case, after the Choice of the President, the Person having the greatest Number of Votes of the electors shall be the Vice President. But if there should remain two or more who have equal Votes, the Senate shall chuse from them by Ballot the Vice President.]6 The Congress may determine the Time of chusing the electors, and the Day on which they
6

Changed by the Twelfth Amendment.



shall give their Votes; which Day shall be the same throughout the United States. No Person except a natural born Citizen, or a Citizen of the United States, at the time of the Adoption of this Constitution, shall be eligible to the Office of President; neither shall any Person be eligible to that Office who shall not have attained to the Age of thirty five Years, and been fourteen Years a Resident within the United States. [In Case of the Removal of the President from Office, or of his Death, Resignation, or Inability to discharge the Powers and Duties of the said Office, the Same shall devolve on the Vice President, and the Congress may by Law provide for the Case of Removal, Death, Resignation or Inability, both of the President and Vice President, declaring what Officer shall then act as President, and such Officer shall act accordingly, until the Disability be removed, or a President shall be elected.]7 The President shall, at stated Times, receive for his Services, a Compensation, which shall neither be increased nor diminished during the Period for which he shall have been elected, and he shall not receive within that Period any other emolument from the United States, or any of them. Before he enter on the Execution of his Office, he shall take the following Oath or Affirmation:—”I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my Ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

Section. 2. The President shall be Commander in Chief of the Army and Navy of the United States, and of the Militia of the several States, when called into the actual Service of the United States; he may require the Opinion, in writing, of the principal Officer in each of the executive Departments, upon any Subject relating to the Duties of their respective Offices, and he shall have Power to grant Reprieves and Pardons for Offences against the United States, except in Cases of Impeachment. he shall have Power, by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, to make Treaties, provided two thirds of the Senators present concur; and he shall nominate, and by and with the Advice and Consent of the Senate, shall appoint Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, Judges of the supreme Court, and all other Officers of the United States, whose Appointments are not herein otherwise provided for, and which shall be established by Law: but the Congress may by Law vest the Appointment of such inferior Officers, as they think proper, in the President alone, in the Courts of Law, or in the heads of Departments. The President shall have Power to fill up all Vacancies that may happen during the Recess of the Senate, by granting Commissions which shall expire at the end of their next Session. Section. 3. he shall from time to time give to the Congress Information of the State of the Union, and recommend to their Consideration such Measures as he shall judge necessary and expedient; he may, on extraordinary Occasions, convene both houses, or either of them, and in


7

Changed by the Twenty-Fifth Amendment.

0

Case of Disagreement between them, with Respect to the Time of Adjournment, he may adjourn them to such Time as he shall think proper; he shall receive Ambassadors and other public Ministers; he shall take Care that the Laws be faithfully executed, and shall Commission all the Officers of the United States. Section. 4. The President,Vice President and all civil Officers of the United States, shall be removed from Office on Impeachment for, and Conviction of, Treason, Bribery, or other high Crimes and Misdemeanors. article III. Section. 1. The judicial Power of the United States, shall be vested in one supreme Court, and in such inferior Courts as the Congress may from time to time ordain and establish. The Judges, both of the supreme and inferior Courts, shall hold their Offices during good Behaviour, and shall, at stated Times, receive for their Services, a Compensation, which shall not be diminished during their Continuance in Office. Section. 2. The judicial Power shall extend to all Cases, in Law and equity, arising under this Constitution, the Laws of the United States, and Treaties made, or which shall be made, under their Authority;—to all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls;—to all Cases of admiralty and maritime Jurisdiction;—to Controversies to which the United States shall be a Party;—to Controversies between two or more States;—[between a State and Citizens of another


State;—] between Citizens of different States;— between Citizens of the same State claiming Lands under Grants of different States, [and between a State, or the Citizens thereof, and foreign States, Citizens or Subjects.] In all Cases affecting Ambassadors, other public Ministers and Consuls, and those in which a State shall be Party, the supreme Court shall have original Jurisdiction. In all the other Cases before mentioned, the supreme Court shall have appellate Jurisdiction, both as to Law and Fact, with such exceptions, and under such Regulations as the Congress shall make. The Trial of all Crimes, except in Cases of Impeachment, shall be by Jury; and such Trial shall be held in the State where the said Crimes shall have been committed; but when not committed within any State, the Trial shall be at such Place or Places as the Congress may by Law have directed. Section. 3. Treason against the United States, shall consist only in levying War against them, or in adhering to their enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort. No Person shall be convicted of Treason unless on the Testimony of two Witnesses to the same overt Act, or on Confession in open Court. The Congress shall have Power to declare the Punishment of Treason, but no Attainder of Treason shall work Corruption of Blood, or Forfeiture except during the Life of the Person attainted.

 

Changed by the eleventh Amendment. Changed by the eleventh Amendment.



article. IV. Section. 1. Full Faith and Credit shall be given in each State to the public Acts, Records, and judicial Proceedings of every other State; And the Congress may by general Laws prescribe the Manner in which such Acts, Records and Proceedings shall be proved, and the effect thereof. Section. 2. The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States. A Person charged in any State with Treason, Felony, or other Crime, who shall flee from Justice, and be found in another State, shall on Demand of the executive Authority of the State from which he fled, be delivered up, to be removed to the State having Jurisdiction of the Crime. [No Person held to Service or Labour in one State, under the Laws thereof, escaping into another, shall, in Consequence of any Law or Regulation therein, be discharged from such Service or Labour, but shall be delivered up on Claim of the Party to whom such Service or Labour may be due.]10 Section. 3. New States may be admitted by the Congress into this Union; but no new State shall be formed or erected within the Jurisdiction of any other State; nor any State be formed by the Junction of two or more States, or Parts of States, without the Consent of the Legislatures of the States concerned as well as of the Congress. The Congress shall have Power to dispose of and make all needful Rules and Regulations respecting
10

the Territory or other Property belonging to the United States; and nothing in this Constitution shall be so construed as to Prejudice any Claims of the United States, or of any particular State. Section. 4. The United States shall guarantee to every State in this Union a Republican Form of Government, and shall protect each of them against Invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic Violence. article. V. The Congress, whenever two thirds of both houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of it’s equal Suffrage in the Senate. article. VI. All Debts contracted and engagements entered into, before the Adoption of this Constitution, shall


Changed by the Thirteenth Amendment.



be as valid against the United States under this Constitution, as under the Confederation. This Constitution, and the Laws of the United States which shall be made in Pursuance thereof; and all Treaties made, or which shall be made, under the Authority of the United States, shall be the supreme Law of the Land; and the Judges in every State shall be bound thereby, any Thing in the Constitution or Laws of any State to the Contrary notwithstanding. The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious Test shall ever be required as a Qualification to any Office or public Trust under the United States. article. VII. The Ratification of the Conventions of nine States, shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same. done in Convention by the Unanimous Consent of the States present the Seventeenth Day of September in the Year of our Lord one thousand seven hundred and eighty seven and of the Independence of the United States of America the Twelfth In Witness whereof We have hereunto subscribed our Names,
t G°Washington—Presid. . and deputy from Virginia

Signers of the Constitution of the United States of america
New Hampshire John Langdon Nicholas Gilman Massachusetts Nathaniel Gorham Rufus King Connecticut Wm. Saml. Johnson Roger Sherman New York Alexander hamilton New Jersey Wil: Livingston David Brearley Wm. Paterson Jona: Dayton Pennsylvania B Franklin Thomas Mifflin Robt Morris Geo. Clymer Thos. FitzSimons Jared Ingersoll James Wilson Gouv Morris Delaware Geo: Read Gunning Bedford jun John Dickinson Richard Bassett Jaco: Broom Maryland James Mchenry Dan of St Thos. Jenifer Danl Carroll Virginia John Blair— James Madison Jr. North Carolina Wm. Blount Richd. Dobbs Spaight hu Williamson South Carolina J. Rutledge Charles Cotesworth Pinckney Charles Pinckney Pierce Butler Georgia William Few Abr Baldwin
Attest William Jackson Secretary





In Convention Monday September 17th 1787. Present The States of
New hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Mr. hamilton from NewYork, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Resolved, That the preceeding Constitution be laid before the United States in Congress assembled, and that it is the Opinion of this Convention, that it should afterwards be submitted to a Convention of Delegates, chosen in each State by the People thereof, under the Recommendation of its Legislature, for their Assent and Ratification; and that each Convention assenting to, and ratifying the Same, should give Notice thereof to the United States in Congress assembled. Resolved, That it is the Opinion of this Convention, that as soon as the Conventions of nine States shall have ratified this Constitution, the United States in Congress assembled should fix a Day on which Electors should be appointed by the States which shall have ratified the same, and a Day on which the Electors should assemble to vote for the President, and the Time and Place for commencing Proceedings under this Constitution.

That after such Publication the electors should be appointed, and the Senators and Representatives elected: That the electors should meet on the Day fixed for the Election of the President, and should transmit their Votes certified, signed, sealed and directed, as the Constitution requires, to the Secretary of the United States in Congress assembled, that the Senators and Representatives should convene at the Time and Place assigned; that the Senators should appoint a President of the Senate, for the sole Purpose of receiving, opening and counting the Votes for President; and, that after he shall be chosen, the Congress, together with the President, should, without Delay, proceed to execute this Constitution. By the unanimous Order of the Convention
t G° WAShINGTON—Presid. .

W. JACKSON Secretary.





Congress oF THe UniTed sTaTes11
begun and held at the City of New-York, on Wednesday the fourth of March, one thousand seven hundred and eighty nine

Legislatures of the several States, pursuant to the fifth Article of the original Constitution.... FReDeRICK AUGUSTUS MUhLeNBeRG Speaker of the house of Representatives. JOhN ADAMS, Vice-President of the United States, and President of the Senate.
ATTeST, JOhN BeCKLeY, Clerk of the house of Representatives. SAM. A. OTIS, Secretary of the Senate.

The Conventions of a number of the States, having at the time of their adopting the Constitution, expressed a desire, in order to prevent misconstruction or abuse of its powers, that further declaratory and restrictive clauses should be added: And as extending the ground of public confidence in the Government, will best ensure the beneficent ends of its institution: ReSOLVeD by the Senate and house of Representatives of the United States of America, in Congress assembled, two thirds of both houses concurring, that the following Articles be proposed to the Legislatures of the several States, as Amendments to the Constitution of the United States, all or any of which Articles, when ratified by three fourths of the said Legislatures, to be valid to all intents and purposes, as part of the said Constitution; viz.t. ARTICLeS in addition to, and Amendment of the Constitution of the United States of America, proposed by Congress, and ratified by the

11

On September 2, 17, Congress transmitted to the state legislatures twelve proposed amendments, two of which, having to do with Congressional representation and Congressional pay, were not adopted. The remaining ten amendments became the Bill of Rights. The amendment concerning Congressional pay was ratified on May 7, 12, becoming the Twenty-Seventh Amendment to the Constitution.

0



aMeNDMeNTS12 To The CoNSTITUTIoN of The UNITeD STaTeS of aMerICa
amendment I. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances. amendment II. A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed. amendment III. No Soldier shall, in time of peace be quartered in any house, without the consent of the Owner, nor in time of war, but in a manner to be prescribed by law. amendment IV. The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.
12

The first ten Amendments (the Bill of Rights) were ratified effective December 1, 171.





amendment V. No person shall be held to answer for a capital, or otherwise infamous crime, unless on a presentment or indictment of a Grand Jury, except in cases arising in the land or naval forces, or in the Militia, when in actual service in time of War or public danger; nor shall any person be subject for the same offence to be twice put in jeopardy of life or limb; nor shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself, nor be deprived of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor shall private property be taken for public use, without just compensation. amendment VI. In all criminal prosecutions, the accused shall enjoy the right to a speedy and public trial, by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed; which district shall have been previously ascertained by law, and to be informed of the nature and cause of the accusation; to be confronted with the witnesses against him; to have compulsory process for obtaining witnesses in his favor, and to have the assistance of counsel for his defence. amendment VII. In Suits at common law, where the value in controversy shall exceed twenty dollars, the right of trial by jury shall be preserved, and no fact tried by a jury, shall be otherwise re-examined in any Court of the United States, than according to the rules of the common law.


amendment VIII. excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed, nor cruel and unusual punishments inflicted. amendment IX. The enumeration in the Constitution of certain rights shall not be construed to deny or disparage others retained by the people. amendment X. The powers not delegated to the United States by the Constitution, nor prohibited by it to the States, are reserved to the States respectively, or to the people. amendment XI.13 The Judicial power of the United States shall not be construed to extend to any suit in law or equity, commenced or prosecuted against one of the United States by Citizens of another State, or by Citizens or Subjects of any Foreign State. amendment XII.14 The electors shall meet in their respective states, and vote by ballot for President and VicePresident, one of whom, at least, shall not be an inhabitant of the same state with themselves; they shall name in their ballots the person voted for as President, and in distinct ballots the person voted for as Vice-President, and they shall make distinct
1 14

The Eleventh Amendment was ratified February 7, 1795. The Twelfth Amendment was ratified June 15, 1804.



lists of all persons voted for as President, and of all persons voted for as Vice-President, and of the number of votes for each, which lists they shall sign and certify, and transmit sealed to the seat of the government of the United States, directed to the President of the Senate;—The President of the Senate shall, in the presence of the Senate and house of Representatives, open all the certificates and the votes shall then be counted;—The person having the greatest number of votes for President, shall be the President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed; and if no person have such majority, then from the persons having the highest numbers not exceeding three on the list of those voted for as President, the house of Representatives shall choose immediately, by ballot, the President. But in choosing the President, the votes shall be taken by states, the representation from each state having one vote; a quorum for this purpose shall consist of a member or members from two-thirds of the states, and a majority of all the states shall be necessary to a choice. [And if the house of Representatives shall not choose a President whenever the right of choice shall devolve upon them, before the fourth day of March next following, then the Vice-President shall act as President, as in the case of the death or other constitutional disability of the President—]1 The person having the greatest number of votes as Vice-President, shall be the Vice-President, if such number be a majority of the whole number of electors appointed, and if no person have a majority,
1

then from the two highest numbers on the list, the Senate shall choose the Vice-President; a quorum for the purpose shall consist of two-thirds of the whole number of Senators, and a majority of the whole number shall be necessary to a choice. But no person constitutionally ineligible to the office of President shall be eligible to that of Vice-President of the United States. amendment XIII.16 Section 1. Neither slavery nor involuntary servitude, except as a punishment for crime whereof the party shall have been duly convicted, shall exist within the United States, or any place subject to their jurisdiction. Section 2. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. amendment XIV.17 Section 1. All persons born or naturalized in the United States and subject to the jurisdiction thereof, are citizens of the United States and of the State wherein they reside. No State shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any State deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws. Section 2. Representatives shall be apportioned among the several States according to their
16 17

Superseded by section  of the Twentieth Amendment.

The Thirteenth Amendment was ratified December 6, 1865. The Fourteenth Amendment was ratified July 9, 1868.





respective numbers, counting the whole number of persons in each State, excluding Indians not taxed. But when the right to vote at any election for the choice of electors for President and Vice President of the United States, Representatives in Congress, the Executive and Judicial officers of a State, or the members of the Legislature thereof, is denied to any of the male inhabitants of such State, being twenty-one years of age, and citizens of the United States, or in any way abridged, except for participation in rebellion, or other crime, the basis of representation therein shall be reduced in the proportion which the number of such male citizens shall bear to the whole number of male citizens twenty-one years of age in such State. Section 3. No person shall be a Senator or Representative in Congress, or elector of President and Vice President, or hold any office, civil or military, under the United States, or under any State, who, having previously taken an oath, as a member of Congress, or as an officer of the United States, or as a member of any State legislature, or as an executive or judicial officer of any State, to support the Constitution of the United States, shall have engaged in insurrection or rebellion against the same, or given aid or comfort to the enemies thereof. But Congress may by a vote of two-thirds of each house, remove such disability. Section 4. The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion,


shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void. Section 5. The Congress shall have power to enforce, by appropriate legislation, the provisions of this article. amendment XV.18 Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude. Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. amendment XVI.19 The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived, without apportionment among the several States, and without regard to any census or enumeration. amendment XVII.20 The Senate of the United States shall be composed of two Senators from each State, elected by the people thereof, for six years; and each Senator shall have one vote. The electors in each State shall
The Fifteenth Amendment was ratified February 3, 1870. The Sixteenth Amendment was ratified February 3, 1913. 20 The Seventeenth Amendment was ratified April 8, 1913.
1 1



have the qualifications requisite for electors of the most numerous branch of the State legislatures. When vacancies happen in the representation of any State in the Senate, the executive authority of such State shall issue writs of election to fill such vacancies: Provided, That the legislature of any State may empower the executive thereof to make temporary appointments until the people fill the vacancies by election as the legislature may direct. This amendment shall not be so construed as to affect the election or term of any Senator chosen before it becomes valid as part of the Constitution. amendment XVIII.21 [Section 1. After one year from the ratification of this article the manufacture, sale, or transportation of intoxicating liquors within, the importation thereof into, or the exportation thereof from the United States and all territory subject to the jurisdiction thereof for beverage purposes is hereby prohibited. Section 2. The Congress and the several States shall have concurrent power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. Section 3. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress.]
21

amendment XIX.22 The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex. Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. amendment XX.23 Section 1. The terms of the President and the Vice President shall end at noon on the 20th day of January, and the terms of Senators and Representatives at noon on the d day of January, of the years in which such terms would have ended if this article had not been ratified; and the terms of their successors shall then begin. Section 2. The Congress shall assemble at least once in every year, and such meeting shall begin at noon on the d day of January, unless they shall by law appoint a different day. Section 3. If, at the time fixed for the beginning of the term of the President, the President elect shall have died, the Vice President elect shall become President. If a President shall not have been chosen before the time fixed for the beginning of his term, or if the President elect shall have failed to qualify, then the Vice President elect shall act as President until a President shall have qualified; and the Congress may by law provide for the case wherein neither a President elect nor a Vice President elect shall have qualified, declaring who shall then act
22 2

The Eighteenth Amendment was ratified January 16, 1919. It was repealed by the Twenty-First Amendment, December , 1.

The Nineteenth Amendment was ratified August 18, 1920. The Twentieth Amendment was ratified January 23, 1933.

0



as President, or the manner in which one who is to act shall be selected, and such person shall act accordingly until a President or Vice President shall have qualified. Section 4. The Congress may by law provide for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the house of Representatives may choose a President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them, and for the case of the death of any of the persons from whom the Senate may choose a Vice President whenever the right of choice shall have devolved upon them. Section 5. Sections 1 and 2 shall take effect on the 15th day of October following the ratification of this article. Section 6. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of threefourths of the several States within seven years from the date of its submission. amendment XXI.24 Section 1.The eighteenth article of amendment to the Constitution of the United States is hereby repealed. Section 2. The transportation or importation into any State, Territory, or Possession of the United States for delivery or use therein of intoxicating liquors, in violation of the laws thereof, is hereby prohibited.

Section 3. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by conventions in the several States, as provided in the Constitution, within seven years from the date of the submission hereof to the States by the Congress. amendment XXII.25 Section 1. No person shall be elected to the office of the President more than twice, and no person who has held the office of President, or acted as President, for more than two years of a term to which some other person was elected President shall be elected to the office of President more than once. But this Article shall not apply to any person holding the office of President when this Article was proposed by the Congress, and shall not prevent any person who may be holding the office of President, or acting as President, during the term within which this Article becomes operative from holding the office of President or acting as President during the remainder of such term. Section 2. This article shall be inoperative unless it shall have been ratified as an amendment to the Constitution by the legislatures of threefourths of the several States within seven years from the date of its submission to the States by the Congress.

2 24

The Twenty-First Amendment was ratified December 5, 1933.

The Twenty-Second Amendment was ratified February 27, 11.





amendment XXIII.26 Section 1. The District constituting the seat of Government of the United States shall appoint in such manner as Congress may direct: A number of electors of President and Vice President equal to the whole number of Senators and Representatives in Congress to which the District would be entitled if it were a State, but in no event more than the least populous State; they shall be in addition to those appointed by the States, but they shall be considered, for the purposes of the election of President and Vice President, to be electors appointed by a State; and they shall meet in the District and perform such duties as provided by the twelfth article of amendment. Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation. amendment XXIV.27 Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States to vote in any primary or other election for President or Vice President, for electors for President or Vice President, or for Senator or Representative in Congress, shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or any State by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax. Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

amendment XXV.28 Section 1. In case of the removal of the President from office or of his death or resignation, the Vice President shall become President. Section 2. Whenever there is a vacancy in the office of the Vice President, the President shall nominate a Vice President who shall take office upon confirmation by a majority vote of both houses of Congress. Section 3. Whenever the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the house of Representatives his written declaration that he is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, and until he transmits to them a written declaration to the contrary, such powers and duties shall be discharged by the Vice President as Acting President. Section 4. Whenever the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive departments or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the house of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall immediately assume the powers and duties of the office as Acting President. Thereafter, when the President transmits to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the house of Representatives his
2

26 27

The Twenty-Third Amendment was ratified March 29, 1961. The Twenty-Fourth Amendment was ratified January 23, 164.

The Twenty-Fifth Amendment was ratified February 10, 167.





written declaration that no inability exists, he shall resume the powers and duties of his office unless the Vice President and a majority of either the principal officers of the executive department or of such other body as Congress may by law provide, transmit within four days to the President pro tempore of the Senate and the Speaker of the house of Representatives their written declaration that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office. Thereupon Congress shall decide the issue, assembling within forty-eight hours for that purpose if not in session. If the Congress, within twenty-one days after receipt of the latter written declaration, or, if Congress is not in session, within twenty-one days after Congress is required to assemble, determines by two-thirds vote of both houses that the President is unable to discharge the powers and duties of his office, the Vice President shall continue to discharge the same as Acting President; otherwise, the President shall resume the powers and duties of his office. amendment XXVI.29 Section 1. The right of citizens of the United States, who are eighteen years of age or older, to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of age. Section 2. The Congress shall have power to enforce this article by appropriate legislation.

amendment XXVII.30 No law, varying the compensation for the services of the Senators and Representatives, shall take effect, until an election of Representatives shall have intervened.

0

2

The Twenty-Sixth Amendment was ratified July 1, 1971.

Congress submitted the text of the Twenty-Seventh Amendment to the States as part of the proposed Bill of Rights on September 2, 17. The Amendment was not ratified together with the first ten Amendments, which became effective on December 1, 171. The TwentySeventh Amendment was ratified on May 7, 1992, by vote of Michigan.





DaTeS To reMeMber
May 25, 1787: The Constitutional Convention opens with a quorum of seven states in Philadelphia to discuss revising the Articles of Confederation. eventually, all states but Rhode Island are represented. September 17, 1787: All 12 state delegations approve the Constitution,  delegates sign it of the 42 present, and the Convention formally adjourns. June 21, 1788: The Constitution becomes effective for the ratifying states when New hampshire is the ninth state to ratify it. March 4, 1789: The first Congress under the Constitution convenes in New York City. april 30, 1789: George Washington is inaugurated as the first President of the United States. June 8, 1789: James Madison introduces the proposed Bill of Rights in the house of Representatives. September 24, 1789: Congress establishes a Supreme Court, 1 district courts, three ad hoc circuit courts, and the position of Attorney General. September 25, 1789: Congress approves 12 amendments and sends them to the states for ratification. february 2, 1790: The Supreme Court convenes for the first time. December 15, 1791: Virginia ratifies the Bill of Rights, and 10 of the 12 proposed amendments become part of the U.S. Constitution.

INDeX To The CoNSTITUTIoN of The UNITeD STaTeS aND aMeNDMeNTS
Admiralty & Maritime cases Advice and consent Age, as qualification for public office president representatives senators voting Ambassadors Case controversies President’s power Amendment procedure Appellate jurisdiction Appointment power Appointments, temporary Apportionment of representatives Appropriations(s) Arms, right to bear Army Assembly, right of Authors Bail, excessive Bankruptcy, Congress’ power Bill of Rights (Amends. 1-10) Bills Bills of attainder Borrowing, Congress’ power Cabinet officers’ reports Census Chief Justice, role in impeachment trials Commander in Chief Commerce, Congress’ power Commission of officers Compact Congress annual meetings declaring war legislative proceedings Article, section III,2 II,2 II,1 I,2 I, A26 III,2 II,2- V III,2 II,2 A17 I,2;A14,2 I,, A2 II,2 A1 I, A I, A1-A10 I,7 I,-10 I, II,2 I,2 I, II,2 I, II,3 I,10 I,4;A20,2 I, I, Page 22 21 20  11 46 2 21-22 2 2 21 40 -10; 7- 14, 17  21  1  1 - 1-14 17 1 21 -10 11 21 1 22 1 12; 41 1 12-1





Article, section Congress—Continued members’ compensation and privileges organization powers special sessions Congressional Record (Journal) Constitution, purpose Contracts, interference by states Controversies, court cases Conventions Copyrights & patents, Congress’ power Counsel, right to Counterfeiting, Congress’ power to punish Courts (see Judiciary) Criminal proceedings, rights of accused Currency, Congress’ power Defense, Congress’ power District of Columbia Double jeopardy Due process of law electoral College equal protection of laws equity ex post facto laws extradition of fugitives by states Fines, excessive Foreign affairs, President’s power Foreign commerce, Congress’ power “Full faith and credit” clause General welfare, Congress’ power Grand jury indictments Grievances, redress of habeas corpus house of Representatives election to & eligibility for members’ terms of office Speaker of I,6;A27 I,1 I,;A12 II, I, Preamble I,10 III,2 V;VII;A21 I, A6 I, A;A6 I, I, I,;A2 A A;A14,1 II,1;A12;A2 A14,1 III,2;A11 I,-10 IV,2 A II,2 I, IV,1 I, A A1 I, I,2 I,2;I,6 I,2;A24;A2,-4

Page 1; 47  14-16; -7 21-22 12-1  17-1 22-2 2; 26; 4 1 4 1 4 1 14 16; 44 4 4; 7 1-1; -7; 44 7 22;  17-1 24  21 1 24 14 4  17  9; 13 10; 44-46

Article, section Page house of Representatives—Continued special powers impeachment I,2 10 Presidential elections II,1;A12 1-20; -7 revenue bills I,7 1 states’ representation in I,2 -10 vacancies I,2 10 Immunities (see Privileges and immunities) Impeachment officials subject to II,4 22 penalties I, 11-12 power of, lodged in house I,2 10 reasons II,4 22 trials, Senate I, 11 Indians, commerce with, Congress’ power I, 1 Inhabitant (see Resident) I,2;I, ; 11 International law, Congress’ power I, 1 Inventors I, 1 Judiciary inferior courts I,;III,1 1; 22 judicial review III,2 22-2 jurisdiction III,2 22-2 nomination & confirmation of judges II,2 21 Supreme Court III,1 22 terms of office & compensation III,1 22 Jury trials III,2;A6;A7 2; 4; 4 “Lame duck” amendment A20 41 Liquor A1;A21 40; 42 Marque and reprisal, letters of I,,10 1; 17 Men (see Persons) Militia (Military) A2;A ; 4 congressional powers I, 1-16 presidential powers II,2 21 Money I, 1 National debt VI 2-26 National Americans (see Indians) Naturalization I, 1 Navy I,;II,2 1; 21 “Necessary and proper” clause I,8 16

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Nominate Oath of office, federal and state Original jurisdiction Pardons and reprieves, President’s power People, powers reserved to Persons Petition the government, right to “Pocket veto” Poll tax, prohibition Post offices & roads, Congress’ power Presidency, succession to President disability election eligibility for office legislation, role in oath of office powers & duties term of office & compensation Press, freedom of Privileges and immunities (of citizens) Prohibition Property, taking for public use Punishments, cruel and unusual Race Ratification of Constitution Religion, freedom of Religious oaths Resident (see Inhabitant) Search and seizure Seas, Congress’ power Secrecy Self-incrimination Senate election to & eligibility for equal representation of states officers President of President of, pro tempore

Article, section II,2;A2 II,1;VI III,2 II,2 A10 A14 A1 I,7 A24,1 I, II,1;A20;A2

Page 21; 4 20; 26 2 21  7-  14 44 1 20; 41-42; 4-46

Article, section Senate—Continued special powers impeachment trials Presidential appointments treaties terms of office vacancies Slavery, prohibition Soldiers, quartering of Speech, freedom of Spending, Congress’ power State of Union message States and federal elections formation & admission to Union powers requiring consent of Congress powers reserved to protection against invasion, violence republican form of government guaranteed suits against Sundays Supreme law of the land (Constitution) Taxing power, in general direct taxes prohibited income taxes permitted Territories Titles of nobility Treason Treaty(ies) Trial Veto, President’s power Vice-Presidency, succession to Vice-President conditions for assuming Presidency I, II,2 II,2 I,3;I,6 A17 A1;A14,4 A A1 I, II, I,4 IV, I,10 A10 IV,4 IV,4 III,2;A11 I,7 VI I,7- I, A16 IV, I, II,4;III, I,10;II,2; III,2;VI I,;III,2; A6;A7 I,7 A20;A2 II,1;A20; A2

Page 11-12 21 21 10; 13 -40 7; -   14-1 21 12 24-2 17-1  2 2 22-2;  14 26 1-14 17  24-2 17 22; 2 17; 21; 22; 26 12; 2; 4 1-14 41-42; 4-46 20; 41-42; 4-46

A2, 4 II,1;A12;A22; 1-20; A2 -7; 4; 44 II,1 20 I,7 1-14 II,1 20 II,2- 21-22 II,1 18-20 A1  IV,2;A14,1 A1;A21 A A A1 V;VII A1 VI II,1 A4 I, I, A I, V I,3 I,;A12 I,;A2,-4 24; 7 40; 42 4   25; 26  26 20  1 12 4 11 2 11 11; 6 11; 4-46





Article, section Vice President—Continued declaring President disabled, role in Senate, role in term of office Voting rights blacks, former slaves eighteen-years-old women War powers (see Congress, declaring war, powers; President, powers & duties; States, protection against invasion) Warrants Weights and measures standards of Women (see Persons) A2,4 I,;A12 II,1 A14;A24 A1,1 A26 A1

Page 4-46 11; -7 18 7-; 44  46 41

“No free government, nor the blessings of liberty, can be preserved to any people, but by...a frequent recurrence to fundamental principles.” — George Mason, 1776

A4 I,

 1

“The people made the Constitution, and the people can unmake it. It is the creature of their own will, and lives only by their will.” — John Marshall, 1821

“The happy Union of these States is a wonder; their Constitution a miracle; their example the hope of Liberty throughout the world.” — James Madison, 1829





U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services would like to gratefully acknowledge the support of the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, PA for their assistance in the development of this educational product. For more information on the National Constitution Center and its mission, please visit http://www.constitutioncenter.org/.



http://www.uscis.gov

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peacefully to assembl, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”

ECM Country starts with the Massachusetts Citizens Information Service to get up to speed on what the state offers for citizen assistance of all types. Of course the page will take you to the “A Citizens Guide to Massachusetts State Services.” Each state in the Union celebrates the same federal holidays but has different local holidays and so does the Bay State. The fifty separate governments that make up the United States have varying elections rules. Elections provide the fundamentals of citizen participation. You can find where you vote by entering address at the Secretary of State’s site. You’ll also learn who has been elected to represent you at all levels of government federal and local. East Central Massachusetts News and ECMNooz YouTube citizenship anthology offers “The Official Massachusetts Information for Voters” 2008 minus irrelevant pages and the “Election Day Legal Summary.”

The Official Massachusetts

Information for
Inside you’ll find...
Offices on the Ballot 2008 ................ 2 How to Register to Vote .................... 3 Voting ............................................... 4 Voting by Absentee Ballot… ............. 4 Massachusetts Voters’ Bill of Rights… ..................... 5 Question 1 State Personal Income Tax............... 6 Question 2 Possession of Marijuana ................... 9 Question 3 Dog Racing ................................... 12 Services of the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts ....................................14 Voter Checklist ................ Back Cover

Voters
The 2008 Ballot Questions
Published by

Vo Regi ter s Mail tration -In Enclo Form sed!

William Francis Galvin Secretary of the Commonwealth
To receive additional Mail-in Voter Registration Forms, call the Elections Division at (617) 727-2828 or 1-800-462-VOTE.
S W T F S M T 2 3 4 1 9 10 11 6 7 8 5 18 15 16 17 12 13 14 3 24 25 22 2 19 20 21 31 28 29 30 26 27

October

VOTE
State Election Tuesday, November 4, 2008

To vote in the state election, your Mail-in Voter Registration Form must be postmarked by Wednesday, October 15, 2008!

¡Atención, ciudadanos que habla español!
El Secretarío del Estado ha publicado este folleto en español. Para solicitar ejemplares gratuitos de la versión en español, llamé a al teléfono 617-727-7030 o 1-800-392-6090 (esta llamada es gratuita).

2

A Message from Secretary Galvin...
Dear Voter: This year’s election is one of the most important in a long time. You have the power to make big decisions for our country and our state that will set the course for years to come. Don’t miss this opportunity. If you have not yet registered to vote, we have enclosed a form for you to fill out and mail back, but you must register by October 15, 2008 to have your name appear on the voting list. If you or any other members of your household would like any additional registration forms, please contact 1-800-392-6090 or 617-727-7030. There are three binding statewide ballot questions that will appear on your ballot. The 2008 Information for Voters booklet lists each question with the text of the proposed law, statements describing the effect of a yes or no vote, a summary and brief argument for and against each question. This information will assist you in making a thoughtful decision before you enter your polling place and you can even take it with you into the voting booth if you wish. My office provides many important services including business formation, investor protection, land record recordation and many others. However, the most important service we perform is providing citizen information. If you need help finding your way through state government, please contact our Citizen Information Service at 1-800-392-6090 or 617-727-7030. I urge you to vote on November 4, 2008 and exercise the most essential right of our democratic system. Polling places will be open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. statewide and absentee ballots are easily available. Very truly yours,

William Francis Galvin Secretary of the Commonwealth

Offices on the Ballot in 2008
This year the following offices will appear on the ballot: ◆	 President/Vice President ◆	 Senator in Congress ◆	 Representative in Congress ◆	 Councillor ◆	 Senator in General Court ◆	 Representative in General Court ◆	 Register of Probate ◆	 County Commissioner (Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Norfolk and Plymouth counties only), or Franklin Council of Government (Franklin county only) ◆	 County Treasurer (Bristol, Dukes, Norfolk and Plymouth counties only) ◆	 Register of Deeds (Northern Bristol – to fill a vacancy) ◆	 Clerk of Courts (Plymouth county – to fill a vacancy).

How to Register to Vote...
Who may register? Only a person who is:
◆	 a U.S.

3 Do I need to attach identification to my voter registration form? Yes, if you are registering to vote for the first time in Massachusetts. The Help America Vote Act of 2002 passed by Congress requires that if you registered to vote by mail on or after January 1, 2003, you will be required to show identification when you vote for the first time in a federal election since registering by mail in 2003, or you can send in a copy of your identification with your voter registration form. Acceptable identification must include your name and the address at which you are registered to vote, for example: a current and valid driver’s license, photo identification, current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document showing your name and address. If you send in a copy of your identification with your mail-in voter registration form, it may not be returned to you. I registered to vote, but my name is not on the voting list—what do I do? If you registered to vote, but your name is not on the voting list, ask the election officer in charge of the polling place to check your registration by looking at the inactive voter’s list and by checking to see if you are registered in another precinct in that municipality. If they still cannot find your name, you may go to city or town hall to attempt to establish your identity as a registered voter or you may cast a provisional ballot. To cast a provisional ballot, you must execute a provisional ballot affirmation before a precinct officer at the polling place declaring that you are a registered voter in the city or town and reside within the geographical boundaries of said precinct. You must also show suitable identification. After the election, the local election official will search for records to confirm your voter registration. If your eligibility is confirmed, your ballot will be counted. If your eligibility cannot be confirmed, your ballot will remain sealed in an envelope until such time as it is required to be kept and then will be destroyed without being viewed. What should I do if I registered to vote and I have not heard from my local election official? If you have NOT received confirmation of your voter status from your city or town election official within 2 or 3 weeks from the date you registered, please contact your local election office to verify your voting status.

citizen, and

◆ a resident of Massachusetts, and ◆ 18 years old on or before election day, and ◆ not currently incarcerated for a felony conviction.

When and where may I register? There is no waiting period to be eligible to register to vote. As soon as you consider your address your “home”, you may register to vote from that address. Please note that anytime you move, you must re-register. If you move, you may register to vote as soon as you move into your new home. The deadline to register to vote for the November 4th State Election is October 15th. Any mail-in voter registration form must be postmarked by October 15, 2008 to be eligible to vote in the November 4, 2008 State Election. How can I register to vote? In Person: Go to any registration location, such as your city or town hall, and complete an affidavit of registration. Upon completion of the form, you will be provided with a receipt which is proof of your registration. You should keep that receipt until you receive an acknowledgement notice in the mail, which should arrive within 2 to 3 weeks. By Mail: Mail-in registration forms are widely available. A mail-in registration form is enclosed with this booklet. To obtain additional mail-in registration forms please call 617-727-2828 or 1-800-462-VOTE (8683) and a form will be sent to you. Mail the completed form to your local city or town hall. You should receive an acknowledgment notice in 2 to 3 weeks. If you do not, please contact your local election office to verify your voting status. At the Registry of Motor Vehicles: While applying for or renewing a driver’s license, you can complete a voter registration application. Check your motor voter receipt before you leave—it will indicate whether you registered to vote or not. Keep your motor voter receipt until you receive confirmation from your local election official. If you do not receive any confirmation, please contact your local election office to verify your voting status. What must I do if I’ve changed my address since I registered? If you have moved, you must register again. You may register to vote as soon as you move into your new home.

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Voting…
Where will I vote? Polling places are located in each precinct in your city or town. Call your local election official or my office at 1-800462-VOTE (8683) or 617-727-2828 to find out where your polling place is located. You can also visit my website at www.wheredoivotema.com/bal/myelectioninfo.php to look up your polling place and view a sample ballot. All polling places are required by federal and state law to be accessible to elderly and disabled voters. How long are the polls open? The polls must be open from 7:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. for State Elections. Some municipalities may open their polls as early as 5:45 a.m. Please call your city or town clerk to verify your polling hours. How do I find out what offices and candidates are on my ballot? Sample ballots as well as instruction cards are posted at the polls on election day. Also, you can view a sample ballot at my website: www.wheredoivotema.com/bal/myelectioninfo.php Will I need to show identification to vote? Maybe. If you registered to vote by mail on or after January 1, 2003, you will be required to show identification when you vote for the first time in a federal election if you have not sent in a copy of your identification with your mail-in voter registration form. Acceptable identification must include your name and the address at which you are registered to vote, for example: a current and valid driver’s license, photo identification, current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document showing your name and address. What if I need assistance? If you need assistance because of vision impairment, disability, inability to read or to read English, you may seek help from either a person of your choice or from election officials. You may also ask the election officials to use the AutoMARK Voter Assist Terminal, which is an accessible ballot marking device, to mark your ballot. As part of the Help America Vote Act of 2002 (HAVA), there will be at least one AutoMARK Voter Assist Terminal at each polling location. The AutoMARK allows a voter to mark their ballot privately and independently. After inserting the ballot into the AutoMARK, the voter can review the ballot and make selections by using the touch screen and/or the keypad while

listening to the ballot over a set of headphones. After making all of the choices on the ballot, the AutoMARK will mark the ballot in accordance with the voter’s choices by filling in the corresponding ovals or connecting the arrows on the ballot. The ballot will then be returned to the voter for deposit into the ballot box. What if I make a mistake on my ballot? If you make a mistake on your ballot, you may request a new one. You may request up to two new ballots. Can I bring materials into the polling place? Yes, you may bring materials into the voting booth. You can bring preprinted brochures or pamphlets, or your own notes, but you can not display such materials while in the polling location.

Voting by Absentee Ballot…
You may vote by absentee ballot if you:
◆ ◆ ◆

will be absent from your city or town on election day; or have a disability that prevents your voting at the polling place; or cannot vote at the polls due to religious beliefs.

Applying for an absentee ballot... All applications for absentee ballots must be made in writing. You must apply for an absentee ballot from your city or town clerk or election commission no later than noon on the day before the election. Applications may be mailed or hand delivered and you may use any form of written communication (letter or postcard) or the official application form. A family member may apply in the same manner for you. Include on the application:
◆ ◆ ◆ ◆

your name and address as registered, ward and precinct, if you know them, the precise address where the ballot should be sent, your own signature.

A ballot will be sent to any address you specify – including your own home. Be sure to apply early. Requesting to vote in person... If you meet the qualifications to vote absentee, but do not want to have a ballot mailed to you, you may request to vote in person before election day. You may vote at your city or town hall before election day at a time arranged with the clerk, but the application for your ballot must be made no later than noon on the day before the election. Call the clerk’s office to make certain that the absentee ballots are

5 available. Absentee ballots should be available three weeks before an election. Voting by absentee ballot. . . The ballot will come with instructions and a set of return envelopes. After making your choices on the ballot, you must enclose it in the inner (smaller) brown envelope and complete the information on the front of that envelope and sign it. Then you put the smaller envelope in the bigger envelope, place proper postage on it and mail it back to your city or town hall. To be counted, a completed ballot must be received by the time the polls close on election day. If you are not able to write, the person assisting you must sign your name as well as their name, address and telephone number. What if I am permanently disabled? If you are permanently disabled and cannot cast your vote at the polling place, you may file a letter from your physician with your city or town clerk, stating that you are permanently unable to cast your vote at the polling place because of disability. A completed application for an absentee ballot for you to sign and return will be mailed to you by the city or town clerk at least 28 days before every primary and election.

Massachusetts Voters’ Bill of Rights
Your voting rights are protected. These rights are guaranteed to qualified registered voters. 1. You have the right to vote if you are a qualified registered voter. 2. You have the right to cast your ballot in a manner that ensures privacy. You have the right to vote without any person trying to influence your vote and to vote in a booth that prevents others from watching you mark your ballot. 3. You have the right to remain in the voting booth for five (5) minutes if there are other voters waiting and for ten (10) minutes if there are no other voters waiting. 4. You have the right to receive up to two (2) replacement ballots if you make a mistake and spoil your ballot. 5. You have the right to request assistance when voting from anyone of your choice. If you do not bring someone with you, you have the right to have two (2) poll workers assist you. 6. You have the right to vote if you are disabled. The polling place must be accessible, and there must be an accessible voting booth. 7. You have the right to vote if you cannot read or write or cannot read or write English. 8. You have the right to vote but must show identification if: you are a first-time voter who registered to vote by mail and did not submit identification with the voter registration form; or your name is on the inactive voter list; or your vote is being challenged; or if requested by a poll worker. Acceptable forms of identification are: Massachusetts driver’s license, other printed documentation containing your name and address such as a recent utility bill, rent receipt on landlord’s letterhead, lease, or a copy of a voter registration acknowledgment or receipt. 9. You have the right to vote by absentee ballot if: you will be absent from your city or town on Election Day; or if you have a physical disability that prevents your voting at the polling place; or if you cannot vote at the polls due to religious belief. 10. You have the right to cast a provisional ballot if you believe you are a qualified registered voter but a poll worker tells you that you are ineligible to vote. 11. You have the right to follow up any challenge to your right to vote through the complaint process. 12. You have the right to vote if you are not currently incarcerated for a felony conviction and have registered as a voter after your release. 13. You have the right to take this Voters’ Bill of Rights or any other papers, including a sample ballot, voter guide or campaign material into the voting booth with you. Please remember to remove all papers when you leave the booth. 14. You have the right to vote at your polling place any time between 7am and 8pm for state and federal elections— hours may vary for local elections. If you are in line at your polling place when the polls close at 8 pm, you have the right to vote. 15. You have the right to bring your children into the voting booth with you. If you feel that your right to vote has been violated in any way, call the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Elections Division at 1-800-462-VOTE (8683). This call is free within Massachusetts.

14

Services of the Secretary of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
◆ Citizen Information Service functions as the
primary information and referral agency for the state, offering data on state programs and agencies. CIS attempts to answer all requests, by providing either direct assistance or an immediate referral to the appropriate agency. The division is also an affiliate of the Massachusetts State Data Center and provides assistance in locating and understanding data of the U.S. Census Bureau. As part of its goal to make state government more accessible to the public, CIS has established a publication series on specific topics of interest, including: •	 The	Citizens’	Guide	to	State	Services:	A	Selective	 Listing of Government Agencies and Programs, with addresses, phone numbers and agency descriptions. Price: $19.20 ($15 plus $4.20 shipping cost). Available from the State House Bookstore, see below. •	 Welcome	to	Massachusetts:	A	Practical	Guide	to	Living	 in the State, free. •	 Your	Automobile	Excise	Tax,	free. •	 Property	Tax	Exemptions	for	Elders,	Surviving	Spouses	 and Minors, free. •	 Safe	and	Sanitary	Housing	for	Massachusetts	Residents,	 free. •	 Veterans	Laws	and	Benefits	Guide,	free. •	 Massachusetts	Facts:	A	Review	of	the	History,	 Government and Symbols of the State, for junior high to high school age students, free. Citizen Information Service can be contacted at (617)727-7030 or 1-800-392-6090 (toll-free in Massachusetts only), website: www.sec.state.ma.us/cis, where many of the above documents are available for viewing.

◆ Real Estate Records

Forclosure and Homestead Information - Massachusetts is divided into 21 registry districts with an elected Register of Deeds responsible for each office. Documents related to the ownership of real estate within the district are recorded at the Registry of Deeds. Website: www.masslandrecords.com

◆ The Massachusetts Archives collects, catalogs, and

preserves records of enduring value from nearly 375 years of state government. It serves as a vital resource to scholars, genealogists, and students and as an advisor to the historical records community in Massachusetts. (617) 727-2816, website: www.sec.state.ma.us/arc

◆ The Commonwealth Museum brings Massachusetts
history alive through exhibits, outreach and student programs and publications. (617) 727-9268, website: www. sec.state.ma.us/mus

◆ The Massachusetts Historical Commission is

the state agency responsible for historical preservation in the Commonwealth. It offers assistance to communities in listing properties with the National Register of Historic Places and establishing local historic districts. (617) 727-8470, website: www.sec.state.ma.us/mhc

◆ The State Bookstore offers a wide range of

books and pamphlets published by the Secretary of the Commonwealth and other state agencies, including the Code of Massachusetts Regulations. A free Bookstore Catalog is available. (617) 727-2834, website: www.sec.state.ma.us/spr

◆ The Regional Offices in Springfield and Fall

River offer many of the services provided by the Boston office and bring state government closer to the citizens of Massachusetts. Springfield (413) 784-1376, website: www. sec.state.ma.us/wso; Fall River (508) 646-1374.

◆ The Elections Division administers all state

elections, provides information on voting, and supplies election materials to the public, candidates and government officials. (617) 727-2828 or 1-800-462-VOTE (8683), website: www.sec.state.ma.us/ele

◆	The Corporations Division is responsible for

◆ The Securities Division endeavors to protect

registering all Massachusetts profit and nonprofit corporations and providing immediate summary information about more than 250,000 corporations doing business in the state. (617) 727-2850 or (617) 727-9640, website: www.sec.state. ma.us/cor Other divisions include:

Massachusetts investors by licensing the sale of securities, requiring that high-risk securities be registered, investigating complaints, and taking appropriate enforcement and disciplinary actions. (617) 727-3548 or 1-800-269-5428, website: www.sec.state.ma.us/sct

◆ State Records Center

website: www.sec.state.ma.us/rec

◆ The Public Records Division maintains, preserves
and makes accessible government records, enforces lobbyist and disclosure laws and records all gubernatorial appointments and commissions. (617) 727-2832, website: www.sec.state.ma.us/pre

◆ State Publications and Regulations
website: www.sec.state.ma.us/spr

◆ State House Tours

website: www.sec.state.ma.us/trs.

15

Protecting Your Financial Future:
Many Massachusetts families have at least part of their assets in uninsured investments like stocks, corporate bonds, or mutual funds. The Securities Division in Secretary Galvin’s office is the state agency with the responsibility to protect investors in securities. The Division has recovered over $200 million for investors. partial restitution to investors. The Securities Division has recovered over $200 million for defrauded investors. Investors’ private rights to sue for damages are not waived by seeking an investigation or inquiry.

Can Secr Galv etary Offic in’s e He You? lp

Before You Do Business with a Stockbroker, or Make an Investment, Check Their Background
You can check the background of a stockbroker and/or brokerage firm, or make a complaint about misconduct connected to investments, by calling the Securities Division at (617) 727-3548 or toll free at (800) 269-5428. If the firm is doing business in Massachusetts, it must be registered. The Securities Division can tell you if the firm and/or individual are properly licensed and if their record includes any disciplinary history, even if the firm is located outside Massachusetts.

Protect Your 401(K) Savings
If you change employer it is advisable that you “roll over” the proceeds from your 401(K) into an IRA at a bank or brokerage so that you can control your own financial future and continue to grow these funds as tax-deferred. This change may also increase your option as to the specific types of investment you make.

Protecting Your Rights
Consumer and investor education is often your best protection. Look with doubt on promises of fantastic returns on your money in a short period of time, even if they come from a friend or acquaintance. Also, many financial frauds prey on the elderly. Always demand written information about the company or the corporation behind the investment plan and its past track record. But bear in mind that even printed documents can easily be created, forged, or falsified. If you are still in doubt, do not send any money, sign any documents, or make any promise to invest.

Enforcement and Restitution
The Securities Division cannot eliminate the risks of investing. However, the Enforcement Section staff is available each day to speak with investors about their concerns. Anonymous inquiries are accepted. Depending on the circumstances, the Division may begin an investigation. If there are proven violations of the Massachusetts Securities laws, fines may be imposed, and, sometimes, the violations lead to full or

Home Heating Crisis
Winter Is Coming!
Home heating oil and gas prices have been continuously on the rise this year. Fuel assistance is once again available for homeowners and renters needing help in paying high winter heating costs in Massachusetts. The federal government annually determines allocation of fuel subsidies to states. In Massachusetts, the Department of Housing and Community Development oversees and distributes this fuel assistance to over 25 local non-profit administering agencies, contracted with the state to determine actual eligibility and disburse the financial assistance (whose amounts change yearly). The local agency will then make payments toward the heating bills to the primary heat source vendor (oil, propane, wood or coal dealer, gas or electric utility). Eligibility is based on annualized household income and the number of members in the household. Call the Department of Housing and Community Development Energy Assistance Programs at 1-800-632-8175 or Citizen Information Service at 1-800-392-6090 to find out where to apply.

Utility Shut-off Information
If you have a Financial Hardship You are protected from having your electric or gas service shut off if you have a financial hardship AND 1. 2. you, or someone in your home, is seriously ill; or you have an infant in the home under 12 months; or

3. it is between November 15 and March 15 and you need the service to heat your home. If you are age 65 or older: Utility companies may not shut off service to households where all residents are 65 years or older without written approval from the Department of Telecommunications and Energy. Consumer complaints about home heating problems can be reported to the Attorney General’s office, Public Inquiry and Assistance Center at (617) 727-8400. For limited income households not eligible, contact the Good Neighbor Fund through your local Salvation Army at (617) 542-5420.

BALLOT QUESTIONS

8 Voter Checklist
Tear out and take to the polls. Question 1 ■ Yes ■	No

Question 2 ■ Yes ■	No

Question 3 ■ Yes ■	No

BALLOT OFFICES

Offices on the ballot in 2008 appear in the following order:
President/Vice President ______________________________________________________________________ Senator in Congress __________________________________________________________________________ Representative in Congress ____________________________________________________________________ Councillor _________________________________________________________________________________ Senator in General Court______________________________________________________________________ Representative in General Court ________________________________________________________________ Register of Probate ___________________________________________________________________________ County Commissioner _______________________________________________________________________
(Barnstable, Bristol, Dukes, Norfolk and Plymouth counties only), or Franklin Council of Government (Franklin county only) (Bristol, Dukes, Norfolk and Plymouth counties only)

County Treasurer ___________________________________________________________________________ Register of Deeds (Northern Bristol – to fill a vacancy) _______________________________________________ Clerk of Courts (Plymouth county – to fill a vacancy) ________________________________________________

INFORMATION FOR VOTERS

is sent to voters by mail to residential addresses, to voters residing in group quarters and to convenient public locations throughout the Commonwealth. Limited additional copies may be obtained at local city and town halls and some libraries, or by calling Secretary Galvin’s Elections Division at (617) 727-2828 or 1-800-462-VOTE; or Citizen Information Service at (617) 727-7030 in the Boston area or 1-800-3926090. TTY users call (617) 878-3889. Be sure to visit our website at www.sec.state.ma.us. The Spanish edition of Information for Voters and a large print edition for the visually impaired are also available at the same phone numbers. An audio edition is also available from the Braille and Talking Book Library in Watertown at 1-800-852-3133. Printed on recycled paper

William Francis Galvin Secretary of the Commonwealth One Ashburton Place, Room 1705 Boston, MA 02108

Non-Profit Org. ECRWSS U.S. Postage PAID Massachusetts Secretary of the Commonwealth

OFFICIAL DOCUMENT

Residential Customer VOTERS

ELECTION DAY LEGAL SUMMARY
This booklet is intended to provide an overview of the Massachusetts General Laws which address some common situations that may arise on Election Day. Other information contained in the booklet includes Election Day activities. Activities in the polling locations include those provisions that apply to candidates and their observers as well as the rules and regulations pertaining to poll workers. For official information, please refer to the General Laws and Code of Massachusetts Regulations cited. The minimum hours polls are open are set by state law, although city council and town selectmen actually set the hours in conjunction with these statutes and local ordinances and by-laws. For state elections and city elections, polling locations must be open at least thirteen hours and for town elections, polling locations must be open at least four hours. G. L. c. 54, § 64 (2002 ed.). For state primaries, polling locations must be open at least thirteen hours. G. L. c. 53, § 43 (2002 ed.). For certain city preliminaries, the polling locations must be open at least six hours. G. L. c. 43, § 44A (2002 ed.). On Election Day, certain activities are prohibited within the polling location and within 150 feet of the polling place. General Law chapter 54, section 65 prohibits within 150 feet of a polling location, among other things, the posting, exhibition, circulation, or distribution of material--including pasters, stickers, posters, cards, handbills, placards, pictures or circulars--intended to influence the action of the voter. G. L. 54, § 65 (2002 ed.). Consistent with the activities restricted by statute, the implementing regulations prohibit the solicitation of votes for or against, or any other form of promotion or opposition of, any person or political party or position on a ballot question, to be voted on at the current election. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(22)(d). Accordingly, a person standing within 150 feet of a polling location, including observers in the polling location, may not: hold any campaign sign; hand any person literature intended to influence the voter’s action at the polls; wear any campaign buttons or identifying signage; solicit a person’s vote for or against a candidate or question on the ballot; or, distribute stickers. Circulators of nomination papers, initiative and referenda petitions are also restricted from soliciting signatures within 150 feet of a building entrance door to a polling place. G. L. c. 54, § 65 (2002 ed.). This is true even where the nomination papers, initiative petition or referendum have nothing to do with the current election. General Law chapter 54, section 65, does not limit the voter themselves from bringing material into the voting booth. They can bring preprinted brochures or pamphlets, or their own notes. The voter may also bring with them a sticker, handed to

Introduction

Polling Hours

Activities in the Polling Location

them on their way into the polls by one of the write-in candidates, to affix to the ballot. However, there are criminal penalties for exhibiting such materials. Accordingly, voters should not display campaign literature while in the polling location. Additionally, it is incumbent on the election officers to check the voting booths regularly to see that no one has left any materials behind. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(22)(b). Signs intended to influence the action of voters are subject to both statutory and regulatory directives. It is well settled that no person may hold a sign that attempts to influence the voter, or leave such a sign unattended, within 150 feet of a polling location. G. L. c. 54, § 65 (2002 ed.). However, other issues often arise on Election Day relative to the holding and posting of unattended signs. There are no state statutes addressing unattended signs on public property. However, if the sign is on state land, for example on a rotary or highway, the state police will remove it where they believe it to be a traffic or safety hazard. On the municipal level, it is quite common for a by-law to exist, either regulating or forbidding the posting of signs on public property. Frequently municipalities also have by-laws regulating the posting of signs on private property. By-laws regulating the posting of political signs have included regulation of: the size of the sign, the number of signs on a piece of property, and the time period during which the sign may be exhibited. If the municipality has such a bylaw, it is the law in that municipality, and must be complied with. Please check with city or town hall for copies of such rules. Observers are allowed inside the polling place, outside the guardrail, unless they are disorderly or obstruct the access of voters. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(22)(a). Such observers may keep notes including marked voting lists. Id. The poll workers at the check in table must announce the names of the voters loud enough for the observers to hear. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(5). The pertinent regulation states: To achieve the legal requirement that the election be held in public view, observers shall be allowed inside the polling place, outside the guardrail, unless they are disorderly or obstruct the access of voters. Observers may keep notes including marked voting lists. If there are so many observers in the polling place that they obstruct voters, they may be asked to cooperate in collecting information. The warden may exclude from the polling place any person who is disorderly or who obstructs the access of voters. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(22)(a). Observers may not request the names and addresses directly from voters or interfere with the check in process in any way. Rather, the observers should be listening as the election workers request such information. If the observer intends to keep notes on a voting list, the observer must request copies of voting lists prior to Election Day. There is no obligation for local election officials to provide a voting list to

Political Signs

Observers

a candidate on Election Day or to respond to any questions from observers. Observers should only communicate with the warden of the polling location and no other poll workers or voters. If an observer cannot hear the names being announced by the poll workers, the observer should notify the warden. Additionally, observers may not use cellular phones within the polling place. Observers are positioned behind the guard rail but close enough to be able to hear the names and addresses of voters as they check in. There is no obligation for the polling location to provide a table or other equipment for observers. Pursuant to 950 C.M.R. § 51.00, each polling location must be accessible. To meet the accessibility standards, many polling locations have little spare space. Accordingly, there may not be enough room to accommodate many observers. If the presiding officer determines that there are too many observers for the polling location, the presiding officer may ask the candidates to “pool” the information gathered by a smaller number of observers. The presiding officer, pursuant to their authority to maintain order and decorum in the polling place, and to prevent interference with the voters, may determine that the number of observers, or their behavior, is disruptive. In such situations, the presiding officer may remove an observer interfering with the election process. Any person may challenge a voter for any legal cause. G. L. c. 54, §§ 85, 85A (2002 ed.); 950 C.M.R. 54.04(23). Such reasons are numerous and include that a person: is not who they say they are; does not live where they say they live; is not registered in the correct district; is not qualified to vote by absentee ballot; was not registered to vote by the close of registration; or, has already cast a ballot. It is not sufficient for the challenger to simply say that a voter is not qualified; the challenger must state the specific reason for challenging the right of a person to vote, and that specific reason must be recorded on the ballot. If a person makes a challenge for an unspecified reason, the election worker should thereafter ask the challenger what specific reason they wish to have recorded. If, after being so questioned by the election official, the challenger gives no specific reason, the voter should be permitted to vote, and should not be considered a challenged voter. Once the warden, clerk or election officer is informed that a voter’s ballot is being challenged, the election officer must: 1) issue the challenged voter’s oath to the challenged voter; (the challenged voter’s oath is as follows: “You do solemnly swear (or affirm) that you are the identical person whom you represent yourself to be, that you are registered in this town and that you have not voted at this election..”); and before the ballot is marked, require the challenged person to write his name and current residence on the ballot; the warden then adds the name of the challenger to the ballot and the cause of the challenge. G. L. c. 54, § 85 (2002 ed.). The ballot is then cast and counted like all others.

Challenging Ballots

2) 3) 4)

Please note that there are criminal penalties for challenging a qualified

voter for purposes of intimidation, or of ascertaining how they voted, or for any other illegal purpose. G. L. c. 56, § 31 (2002 ed.). When an absentee ballot is challenged, no challenged voter’s oath may be issued, as the voter is not present. Therefore, the warden bears the responsibility of recording the name and address of the voter on the ballot. G. L. c. 54, § 96 (2002 ed.). Should a candidate believe that there are violations of the statutes governing the application for or casting of absentee ballots, his observers must challenge those ballots as the warden announces the names of the absentee voters. Taking this proactive approach allows the ballot, and therefore, the vote contained thereon, to be identified with a specific person, and preserves the issue for a potential recount. See G. L. c. 54, § 135 (2002 ed.). If a candidate neglects to challenge such voters, the votes cast cannot be deducted from the appropriate candidate at a recount as there will be no way to link a specific ballot to a specific voter. At that point, if the candidate believes such votes will make a difference in the outcome of the election, the candidate will be forced to pursue a remedy in court. G. L. c. 56, § 59 (2002 ed.). To avoid such a result, the candidate should review the list of absentee voters required to be available prior to the election, and instruct his observers accordingly. See G. L. c.54, § 91 (2002 ed.) (lists shall be prepared by the clerk, arranged by voting precincts, of the names and addresses of all voters on whose applications for absent voting ballots the certificate has been executed, and shall post copies of such lists for public inspection). A person who has completed an absentee ballot who later wishes to vote in person on Election Day may do so if her ballot has not yet been processed. The voter, at check in, may request from the presiding officer that they be permitted to vote at the polls. G. L. c. 54, § 100 (2002 ed.). If the warden determines that the voter’s absentee ballot has not yet been processed and that the individual is otherwise qualified to vote— for example, the voter is asked to show identification which proves their identity and address—the warden may issue the voter a certificate allowing the person to cast a ballot at the polls. Id. The capital letter “C” should then be placed next to the voter’s name, and the certificate should be attached to the voter list and be maintained as part thereof. Id. When the warden later comes across that individual’s absentee ballot, the warden must mark across the face of the envelope, “Rejected as Voted in Person,” and the envelope must be preserved and destroyed in the manner provided by law for the retention, preservation and destruction of official ballots. Id. General Laws chapter 54, section 67 requires that voting lists be delivered to the officers responsible for of the check-in, and to the officers responsible for the check out. The municipality must maintain separate lists of active and inactive voters. G. L. c. 51, § 55 (2002 ed.). However, a single list may be maintained where the inactive voters are designated as such on the list. Id. General Laws chapter 51, section 59 and the applicable regulations require that when inactive voters arrive to check in, they must be presented with an Affirmation of Current and Continuous Residency. G. L. c. 51, § 59 (2002 ed.); 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(6).

Challenging Absentee Ballots

Voting Later in Person by an Absentee Voter

Inactive Voters

The check in process for inactive voters involves a number of steps. The pertinent regulation states in pertinent part: If the name, address or party enrollment of a person claiming the right to vote appear on the voting list as an inactive voter, the presiding officer shall allow such inactive voter to vote upon written affirmation by the inactive voter of his current and continuous residence in the municipality. . ., signed under the penalty of perjury. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(6)(a). An inactive voter must therefore be provided with the form known as an Affirmation of Current and Continuous Residency, in order to provide the voter with the opportunity to affirm in writing, signed under the penalty of perjury, that they do currently live, and have continuously lived within the municipality. Id. If the

voter’s name is on the inactive voters list, the poll worker must also request identification containing the voter’s name and current address. 950 C.M.R. §
54.04(6)(b). If the voter has moved within the municipality, the voter should vote where he is listed on the voter list. Id. Should an inactive voter fail to show identification with his current address, the election official must challenge the voter’s ballot in accordance with the procedures set forth in the “Challenge” section.

Because of a new federal law, the Help America Vote Act of 2002 passed by Congress, any voter who registered to vote by mail on or after January 1, 2003, will be required to show identification when he/she votes for the first time since registering by mail in 2003. 42 U.S.C. § 15483(b)(4)(A); G. L. c. 54, § 76B. Acceptable identification must include the voter’s name and the address at which he/she is registered to vote, for example: a current and valid photo identification, current utility bill, bank statement, paycheck, government check, or other government document showing your name and address. If the voter does not provide such identification, the Help America Vote Act of 2002 requires that the voter may only cast a provisional ballot which will be counted later, but only after the voter’s eligibility to vote has been determined. Additionally, an election officer, authorized to do so by the local election officials, may request any voter to present written identification. 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(6B). The requests must not discriminate in any way and may therefore be: entirely random, consistent, or based on reasonable suspicion. Id. Please note that there is no provision which permits observers to request identification from any voter or even to communicate with voters. A voter who informs the warden that from blindness or other physical disability or inability to read or to read in the English language that they are unable to prepare their ballot or register their vote is entitled to receive assistance to do so. G. L. c. 54, § 79 (2002 ed.). The voter may designate a person of their choice to assist them. Id. In

Identification

Voter Assistance

the alternative, the voter can request that two election officers, one from each major party, accompany them into the voting booth to assist them in completing their ballot. See, e.g., 950 C.M.R. § 54.04(9)(c) (where a voter requests instruction or assistance after entering the voting machine booth two election officers of different political parties may instruct or assist the voter in the voting booth). If the name of a person claiming the right to vote is not on the voting list or is listed incorrectly, the person may seek to vote either by appearing before the municipal election official at city or town hall or may vote by provisional ballot. G. L. c. 54, § 76C. Additionally, a voter required to show identification pursuant to the Help America Vote Act of 2002 as described above, but who does not, must vote on a provisional ballot. To cast a provisional ballot, a person must execute a provisional ballot affirmation before a precinct officer at the polling place declaring that he/she is a registered voter in the city or town and resides within the geographical boundaries of said precinct. All provisional voters must show suitable identification showing their name and current address. After voting on a provisional ballot, the person places it in a specially marked envelope, seals that envelope and returns it to the precinct election official. The ballot will then be set aside until a determination of the person’s eligibility can be made. After the election, the person's eligibility will be determined using the information provided in the affidavit. The municipal election official will review available records, at least those for the last three (3) years, to determine eligibility. If the person’s eligibility is confirmed, the ballot will be removed from the sealed envelope and grouped with similar ballots and counted in a manner that provides the greatest secrecy. If the person’s eligibility cannot be confirmed, the ballot will remain sealed in the envelope until such time as it is required to be kept and then will be destroyed without being viewed. A person may contact the Elections Division, Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth at 1-800-462-8683 or 617-727-2828, or their municipal election official to find out if their ballot was counted. The information is available seven (7) days after a primary and twenty (20) days after an election. When calling, the person must provide their name, address, date of birth and provisional ballot number to receive the information. A voter may request a new ballot if they make a mistake in marking their ballot. G. L. c. 54, § 81 (2002 ed.). If a voter spoils a ballot, the voter may obtain two others, one at a time, upon returning each spoiled one. A ballot that is spoiled by a voter is marked “Spoiled” and then sealed in an envelope without being examined.

Provisional Voting

Spoiled Ballots

Closing of Polls

Any voters in line at the time set for the closing of the polls must be allowed to

vote. G. L. c. 54, § 70 (2002 ed.). The polling location must remain open after the closing of the polls so that the public may observe the counting of votes from outside the guardrail. The voting lists and all ballots removed form the ballot box shall be kept in open view of the voters present until enclosed and sealed up, and all proceedings in the canvass and counting of votes shall be public and in open view of the voters. G. L. c. 54, § 105A (2002 ed.). However, only election officers may take part in the actual process of counting and sealing the voting materials. Id. During this process, the observers must stand outside the guard rail. G. L. c. 54, § 70 (2002 ed.). The process of counting the ballots differs depending on the type of voting equipment used. However, the basic requirements are the same. The clerk must record the final register number on the ballot box. G. L. c. 54, §§ 105, 105A (2002 ed.). A count must be made of the voters on both the check in and check out lists, and the voting lists must thereafter be sealed in an envelope. Id.; see also G. L. c. 54, § 107 (2002 ed.) (procedure for sealing voting lists and ballots; applicable to all of the materials required to be sealed as indicated below). The election officers shall canvass and count the ballots if paper ballots are used, and otherwise, the election officers shall read the vote totals from the counting device after the polls close, either by a printer mechanism or otherwise. G. L. c. 54, §§ 105, 105A (2002 ed.). The ballots not able to be read by the machines must be hand counted. Id. Election officers may not hold a pen or any other kind of marking device during the counting of the ballots, except for the person actually recorded the votes. G. L. c. 54, § 80 (2002 ed.). Furthermore, such election officials may only use red pencils or red ink to record or tabulate votes. Id. For the purpose of ascertaining the results of a state election, city election, or a town election where official ballots are used, or of any question submitted to the voters, the election officials must use the blank forms and apparatus provided by the Secretary of the Commonwealth. G. L. c. 54, § 104 (2002 ed.). The unused and spoiled ballots must also be counted, placed in a container under seal, and the clerk must record the numbers. G. L. c. 54, §§ 105, 105A (2002 ed.). The counted ballots are placed into a designated container, which is then sealed a certificate is affixed thereto stating that only ballots cast and no other ballots are contained therein. Id. The total tally sheets are placed in an envelope, sealed, and the warden and clerk also sign the outside of the envelope. Id. In communities using a central tabulation facility, the ballots will then be transported thereto, and then transmitted to the city or town clerk who must retain them in a secure location. G. L. c. 54, § 105A (2002 ed.). In all other communities, the sealed envelopes and containers will be returned directly to the city or town clerk who must retain them in a secure location. G. L. c. 54, §§ 105, 105A (2002 ed.). If a person encounters a problem at a polling location on Election Day, the person should approach the warden or the presiding officer with the issue. As the warden or presiding officer is in charge of the polling location, they should be able to resolve any issues. However, if the problem persists, a person should contact the city or town clerk who is the chief election officer of the municipality. If the problem is still not

Counting Votes

What to Do if a Problem Arises on Election Day

resolved, a person may contact the Secretary of the Commonwealth’s Elections Division at 617-727-2828 or 1-800-462-8683.

“We hold these Truths to be self-evident, that all Men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness --- That to secure these Rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just Power from the Consent of the Governed….”

East Central Massachusetts News and ECMNooz YouTube are proud to present this anthology of government documents on citizenship in the United States of America. Here are some web links to help with the serve and participate requirement of citizenship in ECM Country. Secretary of States’ Citizen’s Guide to Town Meetings in Massachusetts and Massachusetts Government Websites Lawmakers at Massachusetts Legislative Directory and in general the Massachusetts State Legislature The Federal Government of this resource to take part in America. Serve.gov ECM News and ECMNooz YouTube suggest One Hundred Mile Stone Documents to learn America’s evolution and how you might continue the advancement of the greatest nation ever. “The list begins with the Lee Resolution of June 7, 1776, a simple document resolving that the United Colonies “are, and of right, ought to be free and independent states. . .” and ends with the Voting Rights Act of 1965, a statute that helped fulfill the promise of freedom inherent in the first documents on the list. The remaining milestone documents are among the thousands of public laws, Supreme Court decisions, inaugural speeches, treaties, constitutional amendments, and other documents that have influenced the course of U.S. history. They have helped shape the national character, and they reflect our diversity, our unity, and our commitment as a nation to continue our work toward forming “a more perfect union.” We hope we served to help you serve.


				
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