What Was America's First Constitution Called?

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America's first Constitution was called the Articles of Confederation. The Continental Congress adopted the Articles of Confederation on November 15, 1777, although ratification of the Constitution by all 13 states did not take place until March 1, 1781.

The Articles of Confederation, the first written constitution in the country, was created based on wartime urgency and was largely composed by a body that focused primarily on fighting and winning the War for Independence. This document enabled states to remain sovereign and independent, with Congress serving as the final resort on appeal of disputes. When the U.S. was left with no central government after victory over the British monarchy on July 4, 1776, there was an urgent demand for a new government. Congress advised each of the 13 colonies to devise their own plans for state governments, and by 1780 the 13 states had created written constitutions, which eventually blended to create the Articles of Confederation.