North Carolina's Proposed Amendments to the Constitution and Declaration of Rights, August 1, 1788
North Carolina did not initially ratify or reject the U.S. Constitution, but adopted this resolution containing a Declaration of Rights and Proposed Amendments to the Constitution. North Carolina did not ratify the Constitution until after the Bill of Rights was proposed to the states.
General Records of the U.S. Government, National Archives and Records Administration, Washington, D.C.
Ensuring Essential Freedoms
During the ratification of the U.S. Constitution in 1787-1788, many people felt the document lacked sufficient protection for citizens’ individual rights and liberties. George Mason, author of the 1776 Virginia Declaration of Rights, warned of the government’s usurpation of liberties without specific protections in the Constitution. Some states, when ratifying the Constitution, included amendments specifying individual rights. To broaden support for the new Constitution, the First Congress proposed a series of amendments that became today’s Bill of Rights.