Credentials of the Members of the Federal Convention. Commonwealth of Massachusetts; April 9, 1787 (1)

(Seal appendt). By His Excellency James Bowdoin Esquire Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

To the Honorable Francis Dana, Elbridge Gerry, Nathaniel Gorham, Rufus King and Caleb Strong Esquires. Greeting.

Whereas Congress did on the twenty first day of February Ao Di 1787, Resolve "that in the opinion of Congress it is expedient that on the second Monday in May next a Convention of Delegates who shall have been appointed by the several States to be held at Philadelphia for the sole and express purpose of revising the Articles of Confederation and reporting to Congress and the several Legislatures, such alterations and provisions therein as shall when agreed to in Congress, and confirmed by the States render the federal Constitution adequate to the exigencies of government and the preservation of the Union." And Whereas the General Court have constituted and appointed you their Delegates to attend and represent this Commonwealth in the said proposed Convention; and have by Resolution of theirs of the tenth of March last, requested me to Commission you for that purpose.

Now therefore Know Ye, that in pursuance of the resolutions aforesaid, I do by these presents, commission you the said Francis Dana, Elbridge Gerry Nathaniel Gorham, Rufus King & Caleb Strong Esquires or any three of you to meet such Delegates as may be appointed by the other or any of the other States in the Union to meet in Convention at Philadelphia at the time and for the purposes aforesaid.

In Testimony whereof I have caused the Public Seal of the Commonwealth aforesaid to be hereunto affixed.

Given at the Council Chamber in Boston the Ninth day of April Ao Dom. 1787 and in the Eleventh Year of the Independence of the United States of America.


By His Excellency's Command.

JOHN AVERY JUNr., Secretary


(1) Reprinted from Documentary History of the Constitution, Vol. I (1894), pp. 11, 12. Back

Documents Illustrative of the Formation of the Union of the American States.
Government Printing Office, 1927.
House Document No. 398.
Selected, Arranged and Indexed by Charles C. Tansill
127 Wall Street, New Haven, CT 06511.