| Slavery was a crucial issue for the Founders. By collecting and publishing here in one volume substantial documentation on the issue of slavery during the debate over the ratification of the Constitution, it is hoped that readers will gain a deeper appreciation of the founding generation--slaveholders, opponents of slavery, and slaves--as it grappled with its seemingly insoluble moral, social, and economic dilemma. This edition is taken from John P. Kaminski, ed., A Necessary Evil? Slavery and the Debate Over the Constitution, published by Madison House. Many of the documents are taken from the files of or have been published in The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution and the Bill of Rights, 1787-1791, published by the State Historical Society of Wisconsin. A Necessary Evil? is one of several ancillary volumes published by the editors of the Documentary History intended to make original documents available to a broader audience, including college and high school classes.
Ratification of the Constitution Project
John P. Kaminski, Project Director and Coeditor
Gaspare J. Saladino, Coeditor
Richard Leffler, Senior Associate Editor
Charles H. Schoenleber, Associate Editor