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Liberty Fund Inc.
American Political Writing During the Founding Era: 1760-1805

American Political Writing During the Founding Era: 1760-1805


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This selection of essays, pamphlets, speeches, and letters to newspapers written between 1760 and 1805 by American political and religious leaders illuminate the founding of the republic. Many selections are obscure pieces that were previously available only in larger research libraries, but all illuminate the founding of the American republic and are essential reading for students and teachers of American political thought. The second volume includes an annotated bibliography of five hundred additional items for future reference.

The subjects covered in this rich assortment of primary material range from constitutionalism, representation, and republicanism to freedom of the press, religious liberty, and slavery.

Charles S. Hyneman was Professor Emeritus of Political Science at Indiana University before his death in 1984. He was a past president of the American Political Science Association.

Donald S. Lutz is Professor of Political Science at the University of Houston.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780865970380
Publisher: Liberty Fund Inc.
Publication date: 05/01/1983
Edition description: In Two Volumes
Pages: 1447
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 3.50(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

Table of Contents

Preface, xi
Acknowledgments, xvii VOLUME I { 1 } ABRAHAM WILLIAMS, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1762 3
General principles of government
{ 2 } T.Q., AND J., [Untitled], BOSTON, 1763 19
Separation of Powers
{ 3 } U., [Untitled], BOSTON, 1763 33
State of nature, and violence in civil society
{ 4 } [ANONYMOUS], [Untitled], BOSTON, 1764 38
Public virtue and self–government
{ 5 } PHILO PUBLICUS, [Untitled], BOSTON, 1764 42
{ 6 } STEPHEN HOPKINS, The Rights of Colonies Examined, PROVIDENCE, 1764 45
Relationship of American colonies to Britain
{ 7 } AEQUUS, From the Craftsman, BOSTON, 1766 62
Relationship of colonies to Britain
{ 8 } RICHARD BLAND, An Inquiry into the Rights of the British Colonies, WILLIAMSBURG, 1766 67
Legal relationship of colonies to Britain
{ 9 } BRITANNUS AMERICANUS, [Untitled] , BOSTON, 1766 88
Relationship of colonies to Britain
{ 10 } THE TRIBUNE, No. xvii, CHARLESTON, 1766 92
Public virtue and freedom
{ 11 } [SILAS DOWNER] A SON OF LIBERTY, A Discourse at the Dedication of the Tree of Liberty, PROVIDENCE, 1768 97
Popular consent and the relationship of the colonies to Britain
{ 12 } DANIEL SHUTE, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1768 109
Why government needs a constitution and what should be in it
{ 13 } [JOHN PERKINS] A WELL–WISHER TO MANKIND, Theory of Agency: Or, An Essay on the Nature. Source and Extent of Moral Freedom, BOSTON, 1771 137
The foundations of liberty in moral philosophy
{ 14 } JOHN TUCKER, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1771 158
The origin, nature, and end of civil government
{ 15 } THE PRECEPTOR, Vol. II. Social Duties of the Political Kind,BOSTON, 1772 172
The benefits of civil society
{ 16 } A CONSTANT CUSTOMER, Extract of a Letter from a Gentleman in the Country to His Friend, BOSTON, 1773 181 Slavery
{ 17 } SIMEON HOWARD, A Sermon Preached to the Ancient and Honorable Artillery Company in Boston, BOSTON, 1773 195 Justifies breaking with Britain
{ 18 } [DANIEL LEONARD] MASSACHUSETTENSIS, To All Nations of Men, BOSTON, 1773 209
Uses state of nature argument to justify break with Britain
{ 19 } [BENJAMIN RUSH] A PENSYLVANIAN, An Address to the Inhabitants of the British Settlements in America Upon Slave–Keeping, PHILADELPHIA, 1773 217
Opposition to it based on religion and practicality
{ 20 } CONTINENTAL CONGRESS, Appeal to the Inhabitants of Quebec, PHILADELPHIA, 1774 231
The foundations of a free people
{ 21 } THOMAS BRADBURY, The Ass: or, the Serpent, A Comparison Between the Tribes of Issachar and Dan, in Their Regard for Civil Liberty, NEWBURYPORT, MASSACHUSETTS, 1774 240
Contrasts the slavish spirit with the freedom–loving spirit
{ 22 } NATHANIEL NILES, Two Discourses on Liberty, NEWBURYPORT, MASSACHUSETTS, 1774 257
The origin, nature, and consequences of liberty
{ 23 } MONITOR, To the New Appointed Councellors, of the Province of Massachusetts– Bay BOSTON, 1774
277 Representation and the basis for forming a legislature
{ 24 } GAD HITCHCOCK, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1774 281
On liberty—natural, civil, and religious
{ 25 } LEVI HART, Liberty Described and Recommended: in a Sermon Preached to the Corporation of Freemen in Farmington, HARTFORD, 1775 305
Freedom from sin, from the British, and for the slaves
{ 26 } [ANONYMOUS], An Énglish Patriot’s Creed, Anno Domini, 1775, BOSTON, 1776 318
The true English patriot loves liberty
{ 27 } [ANONYMOUS], The Alarm: or, an Address to the People of Pennsylvania on the Late Resolve of Congress, PHILADELPHIA, 1776 321
Constitutions should be written by special conventions
{ 28 } [CARTER BRAXTON], A NATIVE OF THIS COLONY, An Address to the Convention of the Colony and Ancient Dominion of Virginia on the Subject of Government in General, and Recommending a Particular Form to Their Attention Pennsylvania on the Late Resolve of Congress,VIRGINIA, 1776 328
Summary of political principles
{ 29 }DEMOPHILUS [GEORGE BRYAN-], The Genuine Principles of the Ancient Saxon, or English[,] Constitution, PHILADELPHIA, 1776 340
The excellence of direct democracy
{ 30 } [ANONYMOUS], Four Letters on Interesting Subjects, PHILADELPHIA, 1776 368
The fundamental character of constitutions
{ 31 } [ANONYMOUS], The People the Best Governors: Or a Plan of Government Founded on the Just Principles of Natural Freedom, NEW HAMPSHIRE, 1776 390
{ 32 }JOHN ADAMS, Thoughts on Government, BOSTON, 1776 401
Succinct statement of republican principles
{ 33 }SAMUEL WEST, On the Right to Rebel Against Governors, BOSTON, 1776 410
The religious basis for resisting tyranny
{ 34 }WORCESTRIENSIS, Number IV, BOSTON, 1776 449
Separation of church and state, and religious freedom
{ 35 } [ANONYMOUS] and WILLIAM WHITING, Berkshire’s Grievances (Statement of Berkshire County Representatives, and Address to the Inhabitants of Berkshire), PITTSFIELD, MASSACHUSETTS, 1778 445
How is it possible to have a government without a constitution-
Comprehensive statement of American political principles
{ 37 }PHILLIPS PAYSON, A Sermon, BOSTON, 1778 523
On the virtues essential for popular self–government
{ 38 }ZABDIEL ADAMS, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1782 539
Comprehensive view of relationship between citizens and governors { 39 } [ANONYMOUS], Rudiments of Law and Government Deduced from the Law of Nature, CHARLESTON, 1783 565
{ 40 } [THOMAS TUDOR TUCKER] PHILODEMUS, Conciliatory Hints, Attempting, by a Fair State of Matters, to Remove Party Prejudice, CHARLESTON, 1784 606
Coherent statement of strongly democratic principles
{ 41 } [JAMES MADISON ET AL.], Memorial and Remonstrance Against Religious Assessments, VIRGINIA, 1785 631
Freedom of religion
{ 42 } AMICUS REPUBLICAE, Address to the Public, Containing Some Remarks on the Present Political State of the American Republicks, etc., EXETER, NEW HAMPSHIRE, 1786 638
Strong defense of state constitutions and Whig principles
{ 43 } DEAN SWIFT, Causes of a Country’s Growing Rich and Flourishing, WORCESTER, MASSACHUSETTS, 1786 656
{ 44 } JOSEPH LATHROP, A Miscellaneous Collection of Original Pieces (Selections), SPRINGFIELD, 1786 658 Origin of government, virtue, frugality, industry, etc.
{ 45 } BENJAMIN RUSH, A Plan for the Establishment of Public Schools and the Diffusion of Knowledge in Pennsylvania; to Which Are Added, Thoughts upon the Mode of Education, Proper in a Republic, PHILADELPHIA, 1786 675
{ 46 } THEOPHRASTUS, A Short History of the Trial by Jury, WORCESTER, MASSACHUSETTS, 1787 693
Opposed to removing names of Tories from jury lists
Public virtue, education, and republican government
{ 48 } BOSTONIANS, Serious Questions Proposed to All Friends to The Rights of Mankind, With Suitable Answers, BOSTON, 1787 702
How a constitution should be framed and adopted VOLUME II { 49 } AN ELECTOR, To the Free Electors of This Town, BOSTON, 1788 705
Electioneering as a corrupt practice
{ 50 } BENJAMIN FRANKLIN, An Account of the Supremest Court of Judicature in Pennsylvania, viz., The Court of the Press, PHILADELPHIA, 1789 707
The limits of freedom of the press
{ 51 } [ANONYMOUS], Ambition, CHARLESTON, 1789 711
The importance of ambition for excellence
{ 52 } BENEVOLOUS, Poverty, CHARLESTON, 1789 714
The effects of poverty
{ 53 } DAVID RAMSAY, The History of the American Revolution (Selections), PHILADELPHIA, 1789 719
{ 54 } ROBERT CORAM, Political Inquiries, to which is Added A Plan for the Establishment of Schools Throughout the United States, WILMINGTON, 1791 756
{ 55 } JOEL BARLOW, A Letter to the National Convention of France on the Defects in the Constitution of 1791, NEW YORK, 1792 812
Equality and effective popular control of government
{ 56 } TIMOTHY STONE, Election Sermon, HARTFORD, 1792 839
Liberty, leadership, and community
{ 57 } DAVID RICE, Slavery Inconsistent With Justice and Good Policy, augusta, KENTUCKY, 1792 858
{ 58 } THEODORE DWIGHT, An Oration, Spoken Before the Connecticut Society, for the Promotion of Freedom and the Relief of Persons Unlawfully Holden in Bondage, HARTFORD, 1794 884
The effects of slavery on slaves, masters, and society
{ 59 } [TIMOTHY FORD] AMERICANUS, The Constitutionalist: Or, An Inquiry How Far It Is Expedient and Proper to Alter the Constitution of South Carolina, CHARLESTON, 1794 900
{ 60 } JAMES KENT, An Introductory Lecture to a Course of Law Lectures, NEW YORK, 1794 936
Justifies judicial review by Supreme Court
{ 61 } SAMUEL WILLIAMS, The Natural and Civil History of Vermont (Chapters XIII, XIV, and XV), WALPOLE, NEW HAMPSHIRE, 1794 950
How material circumstances affect culture and politics
{ 62 } [JOHN LELAND] JACK NIPS, The Yankee Spy, BOSTON, 1794 971
Freedom of religion
{ 63 } PERES [PEREZ] FOBES, An Election Sermon, BOSTON, 1795 990
Freedom of speech, respect for public officials
{ 64 } JUSTICE [JACOB] RUSH, The Nature and Importance of an Oath—the Charge to a Jury, RUTLAND, VERMONT, 1796 1014
Oaths and political obligation
{ 65 } NATHANAEL EMMONS, A Discourse Delivered on the National Fast, WRENTHAM, MASSACHUSETTS, 1799 1023
Civil disobedience and obedience to constituted authorities
{ 66 } JONATHAN MAXCY, An Oration, PROVIDENCE, 1799 1042
Liberty and equality
{ 67 } ALEXANDER ADDISON, Analysis of the Report of the Committee of the Virginia Assembly, PHILADELPHIA, 1800 1055
Limits to freedom of the press, compact theory of government
{ 68 } JOEL BARLOW, To His Fellow Citizens of the United States. Letter II: On Certain Political Measures Proposed to Their Consideration, PHILADELPHIA, 1801 1099
{ 69 } AN IMPARTIAL CITIZEN, A Dissertation Upon the Constitutional Freedom of the Press, BOSTON, 1801 1126
Liberty, republican government, human nature, and virtue
{ 71 } JOHN LELAND, The Connecticut Dissenters’ Strong Box: No. 1, NEW LONDON, CONNECTICUT, 1802 1189
Religious freedom
{ 72 } ZEPHANIAH SWIFT MOORE, An Oration on the Anniversary of the Independence of the United States of America. WORCESTER, MASSACHUSETTS, 1802 1206
Public opinion, virtue, education, and popular government
{ 73 } NOAH WEBSTER, An Oration on the Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence, NEW HAVEN, 1802 1220
The underlying principles and design of American government
{ 74 } SAMUEL KENDAL, Religion the Only Sure Basis of Free Government, BOSTON, 1804 1241
Dependence of government upon religious sentiment
{ 75 } JAMES WILSON, On Municipal Law, PHILADELPHIA, 1804 1264
Law, consent, and political obligation
{ 76 } FISHER AMES, The Dangers of American Liberty, BOSTON, 1805 1299
Equality, faction, bigness, corruption, community, virtue A Selected List of Political Writings by Americans Between 1760 and 1805, 1349 A List of Newspapers Examined, 1388 Collections of Writing from the Founding Era, 1392 Index, 1395

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