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Creating the Land of LincolnThe History and Constitutions of Illinois, 1778-1870$
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Frank Cicero Jr.

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780252041679

Published to Illinois Scholarship Online: September 2018

DOI: 10.5622/illinois/9780252041679.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM ILLINOIS SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Illinois University Press, 2018. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in ISO for personal use (for details see www.illinois.universitypressscholarship.com/page/privacy-policy).date: 12 December 2018

The Constitution of 1848

The Constitution of 1848

Reconstructing Government, Balancing Powers, Oppressing Free Blacks

Chapter:
(p.110) Chapter 4 The Constitution of 1848
Source:
Creating the Land of Lincoln
Author(s):

Frank Cicero Jr.

Publisher:
University of Illinois Press
DOI:10.5622/illinois/9780252041679.003.0005

Chapter 4 focuses on the 1847 Illinois state constitutional convention and the constitution approved by voters in 1848. Democrats comprised a majority of delegates, but Whigs built many successful coalitions. The new constitution sought greater balance of governmental powers, reducing the legislature’s appointive power, bestowing on the governor a weak veto power, and calling for direct election of judges. Age and residency requirements were specified for government service; citizenship was required of voters. Two contentious provisions put separately to voters were ultimately approved: one prohibiting free blacks from immigrating to the state and one calling for a property tax to relieve the state’s debt. With the 1848 constitution, Illinois transitioned from a frontier to a modern state.

Keywords:   Democrats—convention delegates, free blacks—immigration, Illinois—state constitution, 1848, Illinois—state constitutional convention, 1847, state government—balance of powers, state government—direct election, state government—veto power, state property tax, Whigs—convention delegates

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