Resolution to Organize the Northwest Territory

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Resolution to Organize the Northwest Territory  (1783) 
James Duane, Richard Peters, Daniel Carroll, Benjamin Hawkins, Arthur Lee

Reported and adopted by the Congress of the Confederation on 15 October 1783. Source: Journals of the Continental Congress --WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 15, 1783, Library of Congress, pp. 681 – 695. Retrieved 22-07-2009.

The committee in their report observe further, "that they do not offer the measures which they have suggested as a sufficient security against the increase of feeble, disorderly and dispersed settlements in those remote and wide extended territories; against the depravity of manners which they have a tendency to produce; the endless perplexities in which they must involve the administration of the affairs of the United States; or against the calamities of frequent and destructive wars with the Indians, which reciprocal animosities unrestrained by the interposition of legal authority must naturally excite; and that in their opinion nothing can avert those complicated and impending mischiefs, or secure to the United States the just and important advantages which they ought to derive from those territories, but the speedy establishment of government and the regular administration of justice in such district thereof as shall be judged most convenient for immediate settlement and cultivation: whereupon,

Resolved, That it will be wise and necessary, as soon as circumstances shall permit, to erect a district of the western territory into a distinct government, as well for doing justice to the army of the United States, who are entitled to such lands as a bounty, or in reward of their services, as for the accommodation of such as may incline to become purchasers and inhabitants; and in the Interim, that a committee be appointed to report a plan, consistent with the principles of the confederation, for connecting with the union by a temporary government, the purchasers and inhabitants of the said district, until their number and circumstances shall entitle them to form a permanent constitution for themselves, and as citizens of a free, sovereign and independent state, to be admitted to a representation in the union; provided always, that such constitution shall not be incompatible with the republican principles, which are the basis of the constitutions of the respective staies in the union.

This work was published before January 1, 1926, and is in the public domain worldwide because the author died at least 100 years ago.