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title:“Hugh Williamson: Remarks on the New Plan of Government”
authors:Hugh Williamson
date written:1787

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last updated:Jan. 22, 2013, 8:32 a.m. UTC
retrieved:Nov. 29, 2023, 1:58 a.m. UTC

Williamson, Hugh. "Hugh Williamson: Remarks on the New Plan of Government." The Records of the Federal Convention of 1787. Vol. 3. Ed. Max Farrand. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1911. Print.

Hugh Williamson: Remarks on the New Plan of Government (1787)

No file of that paper is known to exist, so its date is doubtful. It probably appeared in 1788. Mr. Ford printed his copy from a clipping preserved by Williamson.
It seems to be generally admitted, that the system of government which has been proposed by the late convention, is well calculated to relieve us from many of the grievances under which we have been laboring. If I might express my particular sentiments on this subject, I should describe it as more free and more perfect than any form of government that has ever been adopted by any nation; but I would not say it has no faults. Imperfection is inseparable from every device. Several objections were made to this system by two or three very respectable characters in the convention, which have been the subject of much conversation; . . .
When you refer the proposed system to the particular circumstances of North Carolina, and consider how she is to be affected by this plan, you must find the utmost reason to rejoice in the prospect of better times. This is a sentiment that I have ventured with the greater confidence, because it is the general opinion of my late-honourable colleagues, and I have the utmost reliance in their superior abilities. But if our constituents shall discover faults where we could not see any — or if they shall suppose that a plan is formed for abridging their liberties, when we imagined that we had been securing both liberty and property on a more stable foundation — if they perceive that they are to suffer a loss, where we thought they must rise from a misfortune — they will, at least do us the justice to charge those errors to the head, and not to the heart.

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