The Critical Period

Topics: Articles of Confederation, United States, U.S. state Pages: 3 (979 words) Published: December 19, 2011
The Critical Period

In 1781 the Articles of Confederation became the government of United States of America, a fragile new nation. This new government was just enough to hold the Country together in that period of time. Although, the effectiveness of these Articles can be debated. These Articles were in effective in the that it got the United States through a very Critical Period of time, but were also ineffective enough they had to eventually be replaced for the good of Country.

Historians call this time period the critical period for the new nation. The country itself, could have fallen apart very easily during and after the Revolutionary War. This period was also called the stepping stone to the constitution, because the states after being under the rule of a unitary king would never want that kind of government again. Another thing that was effective under the Articles of Confederation was the problem of Western Lands. In Doc. E there is a picture of a map that shows what territory each state had claimed. This problem was dealt with the Land Ordinance of 1785 and is significant because it shows how the congress was able to solve the problem by taking back the ceded lands, and surveying them to sell. The other land issue that was also successful was the Northwest Ordinance of 1787. This stated that the territory would be divided into three to five states, That new states can enter the union at equal status to the original thirteen, Slavery was forbidden, and public education was encouraged. Becoming a state had a couple more requirements too, first it would become territory when it had a population of 5,000 and when the population of it got to 60,000 it could be admitted as a state.

Although the country stayed together during this critical period of time the Articles of Confederation were ineffective enough to have to be replaced. One of the reasons for this was that, Congress couldn’t collect commerce so they couldn’t pay the soldiers from the...
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