Tucker's Blackstone

Volume 1 — Appendix
Note D

[Section 11 - Powers of Congress (cont.)]

15. Congress may admit new states into the union; but no new state shall be formed, or erected within the jurisdiction of any other state, nor any state be formed by the junction of two or more states, or parts of states, without the consent of the legislatures of the states concerned, as well as of congress. C. U. S. Art. 3, Sec. 3.

In the articles of confederation it was agreed, that Canada, acceding thereto, and joining in the measures of the United States, should be admitted into the union; but no other colony should be admitted, unless such admission be agreed to by nine states. The eventual establishment of new states, within the limits of the territory of the United States, seems to have been overlooked by the compilers of that instrument. The inconvenience of this omission had been felt, and congress were, perhaps, led into an assumption of power not strictly warranted by the confederation; in the establishment of a government north-west of the Ohio. With great propriety, therefore, has the constitution supplied the defect. The general precaution that no new states should be formed without the concurrence of the federal authority, and that of the states concerned, is consonant to the principles which ought to govern such transactions. The particular precaution against the erection of new states by the partition of a state without it's consent, quiets the jealousy of the larger states; as that of the smaller is quieted by a like precaution against a junction of states without their consent. Under the authority of this article, the states of Vermont, Kentucky, and Tennessee, have been admitted into the union. And the boundaries of a new state have been lately established within the territory northwest of the Ohio, which, as soon as formed, is to be admitted as a member of the union, upon the same footing with the original states 222.

Congress, under the former confederation, passed an ordinance, July 13, 1787, for the government of the territory of the United States, north-west of the Ohio, which contained, among other things, six articles, which were to be considered as articles of compact between the original states, and the people and states of the said territory, and to remain unalterable, unless by common consent. These articles appear to have been confirmed by the sixth article of the constitution, which declares, that, all debts contracted, and engagements entered into before the adoption of the constitutionconstitution