Life Before the Constitution

Alaina Kahn

Worker

I am a shoemaker in Manchester, New Hampshire. Since the state legislature stopped issuing paper money I can't charge as much for my shoes. The man who lent me money is threatening to take me to court if I don't pay him back immediately. I fought in the Revolutionary War and got paid in bonds. They never gave me money for the bonds so I had to trade them in for not as much money. I heard that they are writing a new Constitution. But now I won't be able to vote if I don't own any property. Why doesn't the government care about people like me?!

Banker/Merchant

"I am a member of prosperous banker and merchant family in New York." I make most of my money by giving out loans to people. Things haven't been going very well lately. State legislatures are letting "debtors" pay back debts with whatever they have in value. The state legislatures have way too much power! I think that if you can't paw what you owe you should be put in jail. Besides that there is some good news. I have bought thousands of bonds from soldiers. I only paid ten cents for every dollar, I have heard that they might finally pay back in cash! I will make a lot of money off of that!

Enslaved African Americans

It is 1787, I live on a tobacco plantation in Virginia with my family. In the Declaration it said that "all men are created equal." Still, African American's are treated terribly and have to be a slave. Some states in the North have outlawed slavery, and I've hear that they might be getting rid of slave trade! Maybe if we can escape into a free state we could keep our freedom. Even if I were free I'd have to start over, I'd be a poor farmer with nothing. I want real freedom, with land and tools to work on the land!