George Washington Is Elected President of and Presides Over the Federal Convention of 1787 (now referred to as the Constitutional Convention)

The Federal Convention of 1787 (now referred to as the Constitutional Convention) met from May 14 to September 17, 1787 in Philadelphia.  One of its first acts of business after a quorum was finally established on May 25th was to unanimously elect George Washington as President to preside over the Convention.  Washington then presided over the Convention throughout the entire summer.  William Jackson was selected as the Secretary of the Convention and after the Convention ended he gave the Convention’s official papers to George Washington.  Even more detailed notes were kept and compiled with the help of the notes of other delegates by James Madison, who sat in front of the other delegates just to the right of George Washington, who sat at a table on a dias in front of the other delegates.  Since the Virginia delegates arrived before the other states, the Virginia delegation which included  George Washington and James took the time while waiting for the other state delegations to arrive to draft what is known as the Virginia Plan, with much of the ideas presented therein credited to James Madison.  Once the Convention began, Virginia Governor Edmund Randoph was chosen by the Virginia delegation to present the Virginia Plan.  Eventually, the Constitution that was adopted to replace the Articles of Confederation but was to a great extent based upon the Virginia Plan.  Several original copies of the Virginia Plan exist, include one hand-written by George Washington.

~ by americanpresidents on March 5, 2010.

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