Hillsdale Lecture on James Madison, a Primary Author in our United States Constitution
Two quotes from James Madison and my general comments:
1) Letter to Thomas Jefferson from Philadelphia, June 6th, 1787:
"Rhode Island has not yet acceded to the measure. As their Legislature meet very frequently, and can at any time be got together in a week...."
It took Rhode Island a whole week to gather their State Legislature and THAT was considered as "fast" in June of 1787? Considering that Rhode Island is only about 48 miles long and 37 miles wide with a square mileage of only about 1545 square miles, the modern response to this might be "Yikes! Are you sure they used their horses to git where they were a-going?" In some states, that would mean it might take upwards of an entire month just to convene ALL the State Legislatures in the larger states such a Virginia and New York if a necessary assembly or crisis arose. Something to keep in mind as we remember they lived in a non-motorized maritime and agrarian era. That is, they traveled with slow ships driven by the wind (often averaging 4 knots per hour unless the wind really picked up) and traveled about as slowly in much of the inland areas, even on horseback, often over rough overland dirt trails in much of their transportation, only being able to pick up speed in rare clearings and on the more prepared interstate commerce dirt trails that still often had serious / dangerous ruts (or even breaks) in the road to watch out for after the last (sometimes few) rainfall(s) that needed tending; not to mention collapsed - missing - or in serious need of repair wooden bridges that often obstructed (rather than aided) the trail traveler along his way in 1787.
2) In the Debates of the Federal Convention on Thursday, June 7th, 1787, while "in Committee of the Whole", James Madison remarked (as according to his own notes of the same):
" Nothing can be more contradictory than to say that the Natl. Legislature with[ou]t a proper check, will follow the example of the State Legislatures, & in the same breath, that the State Legislatures are the only proper check.
that?), cannot fathom that historically the Founding Fathers were the evangelical Protestant Christians that so many of them were.
For further research on what James Madison himself wrote,
David Barton of Wallbuilders discusses Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson introduced a bill to end slavery in Virginia Legislature, but was defeated in his efforts.
-- Thomas Jefferson, The Writings of Thomas Jefferson, Albert Ellery Bergh, editor (Washington, D. C.: Thomas Jefferson Memorial Association, 1903), Vol. I, p. 4