Skip to Main Content

Articles of Confederation: Primary Documents in American History

Digital Collections

The digital collections of the Library of Congress contain a wide variety of primary source materials associated with the Articles of Confederation, including government documents, manuscripts, and broadsides. Provided below is a link to the home page for each relevant digital collection along with selected highlights.

Congressional Publications

Journals of the Continental Congress

Important milestones related to the Articles of Confederation include the following references in the Journals of the Continental Congress:

Letters of Delegates to Congress, 1774-1789

The Letters of Delegates to Congress contains drafts of the Articles of Confederation by Josiah Bartlett and John Dickinson from June 1776. Both Bartlett and Dickinson were members of the committee responsible for writing the draft of the Articles of Confederation. This publication also includes a few notes on the plan of Confederation written by Bartlett.

Elliot's Debates

Elliot's Debates provides a summary of the ratification process for the Articles of Confederation, a transcript of Thomas Jefferson's notes of debate on confederation, and another copy of the Articles.

Documents from the Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention

 Selected highlights from this collection:

James Madison Papers

Selected highlights from this collection:

Printed Ephemera

Selected highlights from this collection: