When the delegates left the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in September 1787, the new Constitution they had written was no more than a proposal. Elected conventions in at least nine of the thirteen states would have to ratify it before it could take effect. There was reason to doubt if that would happen. The document we revere today as the foundation of our country’s laws, the cornerstone of our legal system, was hotly disputed at the time. Some Americans denounced the Constitution for threatening the liberty won at great cost in the Revolutionary War. Our text, winner of the prestigious Washington Prize, is Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787–1788 by Pauline Maier (Simon & Schuster, 2011). It tells the dramatic story of the year-long battle which brought famous Federalists Washington, Hamilton, Madison, and Jay and Anti-Federalists Clinton, Mason, Gerry, and Henry together with less well-known Americans who eloquently and passionately expressed their hopes and fears for their new country. This is the first major history of the Constitution’s ratification. Join us in considering this great debate and discovering some of the “Founders” whom you have never before met. No class on 11/28/19.