Saturday, May 15, 2021
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Tag: Virginia Declaration of Rights

234 Years Ago Today

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The Virginia Convention of Delegates UNANIMOUSLY adopted the Virginia Declaration of Rights, drafted in March of 1776 by George Mason, with some assistance on the portion on religious freedom by James Madison.  It was later included in Article I of the Virginia Constitution, a modified version of which is in the current Virginia Constitution (drafted largely) by A. E. Dick Howard in 1971), which means it is still in effect.

Mason, a Founding Father who should be better known, later refused to sign the draft Constitution at the Philadelphia Convention, in part because it allowed the continuation of slavery, but also because it lacked a similar protection of rights against the power of the Federal government. The document adopted this day influenced both our Declaration of Independence and the drafting of our national Bill of Rights.

Please allow this teacher of government to high school students to explore the document with you.