George Washington Papers

[Diary entry: 17 March 1788]

Monday 17th. Thermometer at 37 in the Morning—[ ] at Noon and [ ] at Night. Clear all day and pleasant. Wind a little variable—in the Morning Easterly—in the evening Southerly.

Went up (accompanied by Colo. Humphreys) to the Election of Delegates to the Convention of this State (for the purpose of considering the New form of Governmt. which has been recommended to the United States); When Doctr. Stuart and Colo. Simms were chosen without opposition. Dined at Colo. Fitzgeralds, and returned in the Evening.

The Virginia Ratifying Convention was to meet in Richmond on 2 June. Election of delegates took place in each county on its appointed court day in March. “Our elections,” GW wrote John Jay 3 Mar. 1788, “form an interesting epocha in our Annals. After the choice is made, the probable decision on the proposed Constitution (from the characters of memebers) can with more ease be conjectured; for myself I have never entertained much doubt of its adoption” (DLC:GW). The results, which were not fully known for several weeks, indicated a thin margin in favor of the friends of the Constitution (FREEMAN description begins Douglas Southall Freeman. George Washington: A Biography. 7 vols. New York, 1948–57. description ends , 6:133–34). Both Dr. David Stuart and Charles Simms supported the new form of government (Md. Journal, 28 Mar. 1788).

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