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title:“[Gerry:] Reply to a Landholder”
authors:Elbridge Gerry
date written:1788

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last updated:Jan. 22, 2013, 8:12 a.m. UTC
retrieved:Oct. 2, 2023, 7:29 p.m. UTC

Gerry, Elbridge. "Letter to a Landholder." The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Vol. 3. Ed. Max Farrand. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911. Print.

[Gerry:] Reply to a Landholder (1788)

The article by "The Landholder" to which this a reply. will be found above, CLVII. The controversy may be followed farther in CLXXV, CLXXXIX-CXCII and CXCIX.
Mr. Russell:
You are desired to inform the publick from good authority, that Mr. Gerry . . . never heard, in the Convention, a motion made, much less did make any, "for the redemption of the old continental money;" but that he proposed the public debt should be made neither better nor worse by the new system, but stand precisely on the same ground by the Articles of Confederation; that had there been such a motion, he was not interested in it, as he did not then, neither does he now, own the value of ten pounds in continental money; that he neither was called on for his reasons for not signing, but stated them fully in the progress of the business. His objections are chiefly contained in his letter to the Legislature; that he believes his colleagues men of too much honour to assert what is not truth; that his reasons in the Convention "were totally different from those which he published," that his only motive for dissenting from the Constitution, was a firm persuasion that it would endanger the liberties of America; that if the people are of a different opinion, they have a right to adopt; but he was not authorized to an act, which appeared to him was a surrender of their liberties; that a representative of a free state, he was bound in honour to vote according to his idea of her true interest, and that he should do the same in similar circumstances.

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