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Formation of the Union By Albert Bushnell Hart Characters: 1245

Updated: 2017-12-06 00:02


[Sidenote: The Confederation violated.]

[Sidenote: Danger of anarchy.]

The year 1786 marks a crisis in the development of the Union. The inefficiency of Congress was reflected in the neglect of constitutional duties by the States: Rhode Island recalled her delegates, and refused to appoint new members; New Jersey felt so much injured by a New York tariff that an act was passed taxing the lighthouse established by New York on Sandy Hook; Massachusetts, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, and Georgia already had raised troops on their own account and for their own purposes, in violation of the Articles of Confederati

on. Davie, of North Carolina, a little later declared that the "encroachments of some States on the rights of others, and of all on those of the Confederation, are incontestable proofs of the weakness and imperfections of that system." Of the requisition of that year for $2,000,000 in specie, only about $400,000 was paid. Some States offered their own depreciated notes, and New Jersey refused to make any contribution until the offensive New York Acts were withdrawn. In May, 1786, Charles Pinckney on the floor of Congress declared that "Congress must be invested with more powers, or the federal government must fall."

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