What was the evolution of the Articles of Confederation?

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mkoren | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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After the Revolutionary War, a new government had to be established. This government was structured around the Articles of Confederation. There were some issues that had to be resolved.

One question to resolve was who would control western lands. Some states had land beyond their border while others didn’t. The states agreed to give the federal government all western lands.

The states had to decide on a structure for the federal government. Each state would have one vote in Congress. The power of Congress would be limited. The executive branch would be very weak. They were afraid the government would have too much power. This is partially why they fought against the British.

Eventually, people realized having a weak federal government caused problems. There were times that the government didn’t respond to armed uprisings. The economic condition of the country was poor. States didn’t have a place to resolve disputes. Thus, people decided a new plan of government was needed. This led to the development of the Constitution.