Jefferson & the New Republic
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The Articles of Confederation, formally named the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, was an agreement among all 13 original states in the United States of America that served as its first constitution. The Articles of Confederation were ratified in 1781. The colonies resented the laws of the British Parliament so they set up a central government of their own. The only branch of government was a Congress with one house. Congress had power over military and foreign affairs but not over the affairs of each individual state. They could not enforce its powers or collect taxes. The articles were too weak to create a functioning central government so in 1787 the Constitutional Convention met in Philadelphia with Ben Franklin and George Washington present and in 1779 a new document went into effect called the Constitution.