Book Review: The Federalist Papers

“The Federalist Papers” by Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison

I’ve not yet read all 82 papers in this collection, but I’m almost there! These papers were written and published in several New York newspapers between 1787 and 1789, during a period of intense debate between the writing of the U.S. Constitution and its ratification.  The Federalists were in favor of ratification, while the Anti-Federalists — led by Thomas Jefferson — opposed it, largely on the grounds that it did not originally contain a Bill of Rights. These are difficult reading, but worth the effort. It’s amazing to see the way the great patriots of our nation’s founding era debated the fine points of legislation in a civil and respectful manner. We could all learn much from them!

I picked up a nice, hardbound copy of the Federalist Papers at Books-A-Million for just $10, but you can also read them for free online here. The Anti-Federalist Papers are online here.

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