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Legal History

2012

Arts and Humanities

Selected Works

Mary Sarah Bilder

Articles 1 - 1 of 1

Full-Text Articles in Law

How Bad Were The Official Records Of The Federal Convention?, Mary Sarah Bilder Oct 2012

How Bad Were The Official Records Of The Federal Convention?, Mary Sarah Bilder

Mary Sarah Bilder

The official records of the Constitutional Convention of 1787 have been neglected and dismissed by scholars for the last century, largely to due to Max Farrand’s criticisms of both the records and the man responsible for keeping them - Secretary of the Convention William Jackson. This Article disagrees with Farrand’s conclusion that the Convention records were bad, and aims to resurrect the records and Jackson’s reputation. The Article suggests that the endurance of Farrand’s critique arises in part from misinterpretations of certain procedural components of the Convention and failure to appreciate the significance of others, understandable considering ...