Blair Ingham

Fundamental Orders of Connecticut

  • When: from 1639 to 1662 (January 14, 1639)
  • Where: present day Connecticut; towns of Hartford, Wethersfield, and Windsor
  • Consisted of a preamble and 11 orders/laws
  • Why: Put the welfare of the community above individuals
  • Why: The individuals always had to give way if the needs of the community at large so required
  • Set structure and powers
  • Was similar to Massachusetts model
  • People involved: Thomas Hooker, John Hayes, Roger Ludlow

The Impact of the Fundamental Orders of Connecticut

  • Our government is based in the rights of an individual, and the orders spell out some of those rights, as well as how they are ensured by the government
  • The Fundamental Orders of Connecticut provides that all free men share in electing their magistrates, and uses secret, paper ballots. It states the powers of the government, and some limits within which that power is exercised
  • Described a representative government: anyone of any race, religion can be represented in gov't (Ex: President Barack Obama)
  • Example: The Iroquois Constitution embraced representative gov't as the constitution in the new world


See C. M. Andrews, The Beginnings of Connecticut, 1632–1662 (1934).

"The First Colonial Constitution." This Day in History. N.p., n.d. Web. 22 Sept. 2015.

Stark, Bruce P. The Fundamentals of Connecticut. Digital image. Connecticut History.Org. CThumanities. Web. 24 September 2015.

Connecticut Colony. Digital image. File:Ctcolony.png. Wikimedia Commons, 16 August 2015. Web. 28 September 2015.

DeMar, Gary. Fundamental Orders. Digital image. It Might be Time to Sue Some Government Officials “In the Year of Our Lord” 2010. The American Vision, 28 June 2010. Web. 28 September 2015.