Celebrate Constitution Day at the National Archives!
September 3, 2015
On September 17 join us in celebrating Constitution Day on the anniversary of the signing of one of our founding documents, exploring what it really means to be “We the people . . ” It is also Citizenship Day, welcoming and honoring new American citizens.
This Constitution Day consider making a donation to the National Archives Foundation. A gift of just $10 helps the National Archives teach the next generation of citizen leaders the American story.
The Constitution of the United States was drafted by James Madison, and was signed by members of the Constitutional Convention in Independence Hall, Philadelphia, on September 17, 1787. Each of the colonies was presented with a copy of the Constitution, but the original and only signed copy of the Constitution resides in the Rotunda of the National Archives in Washington, DC. The first Constitution Day was recognized in Iowa in 1911, and in the mid 1900s, the holiday became known as “I am American Day,” a celebration of what it meant to be a citizen. In 2004, Congress officially recognized September 17 as Constitution and Citizenship Day.
Did you know…?
- The Constitution of the United States is the oldest written national Constitution still in existence.
- On May 29, 1790, Rhode Island voted by two votes to ratify the Constitution and became a part of the United States. It was the last state to ratify the document, but is not represented by signatures on the original document.
- “Pennsylvania” is misspelled with a single “n” in the list of signatories on the last page, though it is spelled correctly earlier in the document (Article 1, Section 2).
To celebrate this momentous document and its influence on American history and culture throughout the past 228 years, join us at the National Archives for a packed day of free public programming for all ages!
Senator Mike Lee will be discussing little-known stories behind six of the Constitution’s most indispensable provisions and how the courts, Congress and the executive branch have used the Constitution to their own advantage in Our Lost Constitution: The Willful Subversion of America’s Founding Document at noon in the William G. McGowan Theater.
For our younger citizens there will be Constitution Day Family Activities in the Boeing Learning Center from 1 pm until 4 pm. Children and adults alike can test their knowledge with the Preamble Scramble, make revolutionary-era paper wigs, and much more!
At 7 pm in the McGowan Theater, there will be a lively panel discussion on what the future holds for the Constitution, and what challenges the leaders of tomorrow may face in protecting the ideals enshrined in its provisions in The Young Madisons: Why a New Generation Is Standing Up for the Constitution.
If you want to get your own copy of the Constitution, celebrate “We the People,” or learn more about our founding documents – all while supporting civics education! – check out the wide selection available at the myArchives Store.