Origins of American Government


King John signs Magna Carta

June 15, 1215

Cause: To make peace between the King and several rebel barons
Effect: Promised the protection of church rights, access to swift justice, and more.

Mayflower Compact is signed

November 11, 1620

Cause: To prevent anarchy in the new settlement
Effect: Kept everyone bound to the contract

Virginia becomes first Royal Colony


Cause: King James I revokes the Virginia company's charter
Effect: Virginia becomes a Royal Colony

King Charles I signs Petition of Right

June 7, 1628

Cause: King Charles was abusing his subjects and overstepped the Magna Carta
Effect: The King was legally required to respect the rights of his subjects

Fundemental Order of Conneticut

January 14, 1639

Cause: Disputes among settlers in Connecticut
Effect: Settled disputes and gave voting rights to more men

Massachusetts Body of Liberties is signed

Approx. December 1641

Cause: The forming of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Effect: Guaranteed many individual rights

William and Mary agree to the English Bill of Rights


Cause: A series of mistreatment of the English people
Effect: Guarantees many rights to citizens and Parliament

Stamp Act Congress meets in New York

October 7, 1765 - October 25, 1765

Cause: Unfair taxation on the American Colonies
Effect: The stamp act was repealed and the Declaration Act was put into effect

First Continental Congress meets in Philadelphia

September 5, 1774

Cause: Passage of the Intolerable Acts
Effect: The Revolutionary War

Declaration of Independence is signed

July 4, 1776

Cause: Long history of mistreatment by England
Effect: The formation of the United States of America