Friday, May 25, 1787

assembly room of Independence Hall

Assembly Room of Independence Hall

Independence National Historical Park


"…a quorum… present … by a unanimous vote I was called up to the Chair as President of the body."

-George Washington's Diary, May 25, 1787

Seven states achieved quorum: New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Virginia, North Carolina, and South Carolina. The delegates presented their credentials to a president pro tempore and the Convention officially opened.

Robert Morris, acting for Dr. Franklin who was too ill to attend, nominated George Washington as chairman. John Rutledge seconded and Washington was unanimously elected to the post. Robert Morris and John Rutledge escorted the General to the chair.


Major William Jackson
Unidentified artist, c. 1795

Independence National Historical Park

The Convention appointed William Jackson as secretary, and named George Wythe, Alexander Hamilton and Charles Pinckney to a Rules Committee. Wythe, the Virginia lawyer and law professor, chaired this committee that Washington said had been "…chosen… to prepare rules and regulations for conducting the business." The Convention adjourned till Monday to allow the committee time to prepare the rules.


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