Connecticut Ratification
  • Colony Founded: March 3, 1636
  • Ratified Constitution: January 9, 1788
  • Total Population: 235,138 (1790 est.)
    • Free: 232,374
    • Slave: 2,764
  • Major Economic Institutions: Manufacturing, Banking, Shipping, Agriculture
  • State Government: Connecticut held the same basic framework of government since 1639 (they were the only state to retain their colonial charter after the Revolution). They had a two-part General Assembly where only white male property holders could vote. A governor was chosen by the Assembly, but had little power beyond control of the militia and administrative duties. Likewise, a court system existed, but their decisions could be overturned by the Assembly.
  • Ratification Debate: Connecticut was a relatively divided state between Federalists and Anti-Federalists. Individual delegates to the ratification convention were often instructed to vote according to what their constituent town wanted. At the convention in January, however, Federalists dominated the debate, including its coverage, which skewed in favor of their side. Over the course of a week, strong Federalist speakers addressed and satisfied the concerns of most detractors, reassuring them that state rights would not be infringed upon by the Constitution. In all, Connecticut ratified the Constitution 128-40, with even the minority feeling generally satisfied by the result.1
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