[Volume 1, Page 637]
CHAPTER 17|Document 18
Concord Town Meeting Resolutions21 Oct. 1776Handlin 152--53
At a meeting of the Inhabitents of the Town of Concord being free and twenty one years of age and upward, met by adjournment on the twenty first Day of October 1776 to take into Consideration a Resolve of the Honorable House of Representatives of this State on the 17th of September Last, the Town Resolved as followes------
Resolve 1st. That this State being at Present destitute of a Properly established form of Goverment, it is absolutly necesary that one should be emmediatly formed and established------
Resolved 2 That the Supreme Legislative, either in their Proper Capacity, or in Joint Committee, are by no means a Body proper to form and Establish a Constitution, or form of Government; for Reasons following.
first Because we Conceive that a Constitution in its Proper Idea intends a System of Principles Established to Secure the Subject in the Possession and enjoyment of their Rights and Priviliges, against any Encroachments of the Governing Part------
2d Because the Same Body that forms a Constitution have of Consequence a power to alter it. 3d--Because a Constitution alterable by the Supreme Legislative is no Security at all to the Subject against any Encroachment of the Governing part on any, or on all of their Rights and priviliges. Resolve 3d. That it appears to this Town highly necesary and Expedient that a Convention, or Congress be immediately Chosen, to form and establish a Constitution, by the Inhabitents of the Respective Towns in this State, being free and of twenty one years of age, and upwards, in Proportion as the Representatives of this State formerly ware Chosen; the Convention or Congress not to Consist of a greater number then the House of assembly of this State heretofore might Consist of, Except that each Town and District shall have Liberty to Send one Representative or otherwise as Shall appear meet to the Inhabitents of this State in General
Resolve 4th. that when the Convention, or Congress have formed a Constitution they adjourn for a Short time, and Publish their Proposed Constitution for the Inspection and Remarks of the Inhabitents of this State.
Resolved 5ly. That the Honorable House of assembly of this State be Desired to Recommend it to the Inhabitants of the State to Proceed to Chuse a Convention or Congress for the Purpas abovesaid as soon as Possable.
Handlin, Oscar, and Handlin, Mary, eds. The Popular Sources of Political Authority: Documents on the Massachusetts Constitution of 1780. Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 1966.
© 1987 by The University of Chicago