Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Owens, Kenneth N.||Hayter, Earl W. (Earl Wiley), 1901-1994

Degree Name

M.A. (Master of Arts)

Legacy Department

Department of History


United States. Ordinance of 1787


The Ordinance of 1787 was a most successful piece of legislation, for it established a colonial policy that the United States utilized throughout the settlement of its vast public domain. Yet, all of that document's provisions ware not regarded as true guides to successful colonization. In particular, Compact Articles Five and Six of the Ordinance were repeatedly disregarded and violated. therefore, there is a need to analyze these provisions in order to understand the reasons for such violations. The intent of this study is to prove that Compact Articles Five and Six were not legally articles of compact to begin with, and that the public officials moot directly concerned with problems of government in the Old Northwest did not consider them such unless it proved to be expedient. An examination of the violations, one by one as they occurred in the territories, leads to two important conclusions. First, the violations of Compact Article Five did not in any way diminish the political and economic success of the states which were formed from the Old Northwest; on the contrary, those very violations enhanced each of these states and the nation as well. Second, the violations of Compact Article Six, on the other hand, did not bring results so beneficial. Disregard for the prohibition of slavery contained in that provision served merely to entrench slavery and forms of indentured servitude, with its ramifications, into the national climate of opinion.


Includes bibliographical references.


iv, 132 pages




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