Today is Constitution Day, the 223rd anniversary of the signing of the US Constitution Sept. 17, 1787. (It wasn’t ratified by the necessary nine states until 1788.)
Ours is the oldest and shortest written constitution among major governments. More than 11,000 amendments have been introduced; 33 have gone to states for ratification and 27 have actually become part of the Constitution. The first 10 of those are the Bill of Rights, added in 1791.
The law establishing Constitution Day was passed in 2004 (before that, today was known as Citizenship Day). Here are some links for more information:
- The National Constitution Center’s Constitution Day website (you can see which Founding Father you’re most like and take a US citizenship quiz)
- The National Archives’ “Inside the Vaults” video on historical documents relating to the writing and ratification of the Constitution
- National Park Service Independence Hall, where the Constitution was written
- The State of the Constitution: What Americans Know (the results of a survey conducted by James Madison’s Montpelier)