22¢ Establish Justice
Drafting the Constitution
Issue Date: August 28, 1987
City: Washington, DC
Printed By: Bureau of Engraving and Printing
Printing Method: Photogravure
Perforations: 10 horizontally
In 1987, the United States celebrated the 200th anniversary of the drafting of the U.S. Constitution. This booklet contains five commemorative stamps, each depicting a portion of the preamble to the Constitution.
The Constitutional Convention was held in Independence Hall in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The convention was supposed to open on May 4, 1787, but very few delegates had arrived by that time. On May 25th, the convention officially opened. Twelve states sent representatives – Rhode Island did not wish to have a national government. On September 17, 1787, 39 of the 55 delegates signed the United States Constitution. Less than three months later, Delaware became the first state to ratify the document, and other states soon followed. However, North Carolina and Rhode Island refused to approve the Constitution until amendments protecting the rights of all people were added. As a result, 10 amendments, known as the Bill of Rights, were added to the Constitution on December 15, 1791.
The U.S. Constitution establishes our nation’s fundamental laws. It creates the form of the national government, and defines the rights and liberties of the American people. It also determines the goals of the U.S. government and how they should be achieved.