James Madison, Bill Authorizing Amendment in Articles of Confederation

21 June 1784Papers 8:84

For the purpose of introducing a more convenient and certain rule of ascertaining the proportions to be supplied to the common Treasury of the United States recommended by Congress in their act of the 18 of April 1783. Be it enacted by the General Assembly that so much of the 8th. of the articles of Confederation & perpetual Union between the 13 States of America, as is contained in the words following, to wit, "all charges of war, and all other expences that shall be incurred for the common defence, or General welfare, and allowed by the U. S. in Congs. [Volume 3, Page 355] assembd. shall be defrayed out of a Common Treasury, which shall be supplied by the several States in proportion to the value of all land within each State granted to or surveyed for any person, as such land and the buildings & improvement thereon, shall be estimated according to such mode as the U. S. in Congress assembd. shall from time to time direct and appoint," shall be revoked & made void on the part of this Commonwealth; and in place thereof it is declared & concluded, the same having been agreed to in a Congress of the U. States, that all charges of war & all other expences that have been or shall be incurred for the common defence or general welfare, and allowed by the U. S. in Congress assembled, except so far as shall be otherwise provided for, shall be defrayed out of a Common Treasury, which shall be supplied by the several states in proportion to the whole number of white & other free Citizens & inhabitants of every age, sex and condition, including those bound to servitude for a term of years, and three fifths of all other persons not comprehended in the foregoing description, except Indians not paying taxes, in each State; which number shall be biennially taken & transmitted to the U. S. in Congress assembled, in such mode as they shall direct and appoint: And the Delegates representing this State in Congress, or any two of them, are hereby authorised & required to subscribe & ratify the said alteration of the Articles of Confederation & perpetual Union; and the same when subscribed & ratified by the said Delegates, and by the Delegates of each of the other Confoederated States duly authorised therefor, shall be valid & binding as to this Commonwealth.

The Papers of James Madison. Edited by William T. Hutchinson et al. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press, 1962--77 (vols. 1--10); Charlottesville: University Press of Virginia, 1977--(vols. 11--).