Roger Sherman and The Connecticut Compromise
In Article VI of the
Constitution of the United States, the framers declared, "This
Constitution... to be the supreme Law of the Land." Constitutional
authority, Laurence Tribe, notes in his book, American
Constitutional Law, that "the Constitution is an endlessly
intriguing object of study, and represents the best effort of its
kind in the history of the world." Among the men who created the
Constitution in Philadelphia during the summer of 1787, Roger
Sherman, a Superior Court Judge, is remembered as the architect of
the Connecticut Compromise.
Constitutional Convention became deadlocked over the matter of
legislative voting, Sherman proposed a system similar to one he had
advocated previously as a delegate to the Continental Congress in
1776. The compromise provided for representation in the House of
Representatives according to population and in the Senate by equal
numbers for each state. Sherman's compromise was adopted on July 16,
1787 by a vote of five states to four, and served not only to save
the crumbling convention, but provided stimulus to resolve other
issues yet to be decided.
ratification of the Constitution, Sherman served first in the House
of Representatives and then in the Senate. He died while still a
Senator in 1793, and is buried in the Grove Street Cemetery in New
Sherman was the
only person to sign all four documents of the American
Revolution: the Continental Association of 1774, the Declaration of
Independence, the Articles of Confederation and the Constitution of
the United States.
reading on the topic see: 61 Conn. Bar Journal 182.
of Connecticut Legal History