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Gouverneur Morris

Data de nascimento: 31. Janeiro 1752
Data de falecimento: 6. Novembro 1816


Gouverneur Morris I was an American statesman, a Founding Father of the United States, and a signatory to the Articles of Confederation and the United States Constitution. He wrote the Preamble to the United States Constitution and has been called the "Penman of the Constitution." In an era when most Americans thought of themselves as citizens of their respective states, Morris advanced the idea of being a citizen of a single union of states. He represented New York in the United States Senate from 1800 to 1803.

Morris was born into a wealthy landowning family in New York City. After attending Columbia College, he studied law under Judge William Smith and earned admission to the bar. He was elected to the New York Provincial Congress before serving in the Continental Congress. After losing re-election to Congress, he moved to Philadelphia and became the city's assistant superintendent of finance. He represented Pennsylvania at the 1787 Philadelphia Convention, where he advocated a strong central government. He served on the committee that wrote the final draft of the United States Constitution.

After the ratification of the Constitution, Morris served as Minister Plenipotentiary to France. He criticized the French Revolution and the execution of Marie Antoinette. Morris returned to the United States in 1798 and won election to the Senate in 1800, affiliating with the Federalist Party. He lost re-election in 1803. After leaving the Senate, he served as chairman of the Erie Canal Commission.

Citações Gouverneur Morris

„Are they men? Then make them citizens, and let them vote“

—  Gouverneur Morris
Context: Upon what principle is it that the slaves shall be computed in the representation? Are they men? Then make them citizens, and let them vote. Are they property? Why, then, is no other property included? The houses in this city are worth more than all the wretched slaves who cover the rice swamps of South Carolina. The admission of slaves into the Representation when fairly explained comes to this: that the inhabitant of Georgia and South Carolina who goes to the Coast of Africa, and in defiance of the most sacred laws of humanity tears away his fellow creatures from their dearest connections and damns them to the most cruel bondages, shall have more votes in a Government instituted for protection of the rights of mankind, than the Citizen of Pennsylvania or New Jersey who views with a laudable horror, so nefarious a practice. Debate at the Constitutional Convention (August 8 1787)


„It is not easy to be wise for all times, not event for the present much less for the future; and those who judge the past must recollect that, when it was the present the present was future“

—  Gouverneur Morris
Gouverneur Morris to Robert Walsh ( February 5, 1811

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