Today in History–October 27–the Library of Congress features the Federalist Papers, the first of which was published on this day in 1787. This series of essays, 85 in all, were published in newspapers under the name of Publius but were actually written by Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, and John Jay. Their purpose, in essence, was to argue for the necessity of checks and balances in the new government. Learn more by visiting the Today in History section and accessing the resources linked to below.
Federalist Papers online
The Federalist Papers Creating the United States online exhibition item
The Federalist Madison’s Treasures online exhibition item
Alexander Hamilton’s notes for a speech proposing a plan of government at the Constitutional Convention
Thomas Jefferson letter to James Madison (November 18, 1788) praised the Federalist Papers “as being, in my opinion, the best commentary on the principles of government, which ever was written.”
Related primary source sets