What are some facts about the signing of the U.S. Constitution?


Quick Answer

Neither John Adams nor Thomas Jefferson attended the Constitutional Convention, which opened on May 25, 1787. At the time, Thomas Jefferson was serving as the U.S. minister in France, while John Adams was a U.S. minister in Great Britain. The convention was held in the then-Pennsylvania State House.

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Full Answer

Although the U.S. Constitution was written in 1787, it wasn't until a year later that the necessary nine states ratified it. It is not only the oldest but also the shortest written constitution of any major government in the world, having a total of 4,400 words. September 17, which is Constitution Day, marks the anniversary of the day that the framers signed the Constitution. The original document has been on display in the National Archives Building since 1952.

Of the delegates that attended the Constitutional Convention, Benjamin Franklin was the oldest. While majority of delegates were in their 30s and 40s, Franklin was 81 years old. The youngest delegate was Jonathan Dayton, who was only 26 years old.

The Bill of Rights was added in 1791 after Americans expressed concerns that the original Constitution didn't feature individual rights. Although Congress has received thousands of proposed amendments, states have approved only 27 of those amendments as of 2015.

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