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Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (ed. Benson Lossing), Declaration of rights by
Declaration of rights by Virginia. George Mason drafted for Virginia a declaration of rights, and on May 27, 1776, Archibald Carey presented it to the Virginia convention. On June 12 it was adopted. It declared that all men are by nature equally free, and are invested with inalienable rights—namely, the enjoyment of life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness and safety; that all power is vested in, and consequently derived from, the people; that government is, or ought to be, instituted for the common benefit and security of the people, nation, or community, and that when government shall fail to perform its required functions, a majority of the people have an inalienable right to reform or abolish it; that, public services not being descendible, the office of magistrate, legislator, or judge ought not to be hereditary; that the legislative and executive powers of the state should be distinct from the judicature, and that the members of the first two should, at fixed
Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (ed. Benson Lossing), Federal convention, the. (search)
Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (ed. Benson Lossing),
Mason, George 1725- 1792 (search)
Mason, George 1725-1792 Statesman; born in Fairfax county, Va., in 1725; was a firm patriot and able statesman. In 1769 he drew up the non-importation resolutions which Washington presented to the Virginia Assembly, and which were unanimously adopted. He also wrote a powerful tract against the claim of the British Parliament
Henry, led the opposition to it in the convention of Virginia.
He also declined the office of United States Senator, to which he was elected.
Jefferson wrote of Mason: He was a man of the first order of wisdom, of expansive mind, profound judgment, cogent in argument, learned in the lore of our form of Constitution, and earnest first order of wisdom, of expansive mind, profound judgment, cogent in argument, learned in the lore of our form of Constitution, and earnest for the republican change on democratic principles.
He died in Fairfax county, Va., Oct. 7, 1792.
A statue of Mason occupies a pedestal on Crawford's monument of Washington in Richmond, Va.
Harper's Encyclopedia of United States History (ed. Benson Lossing), States, origin of the names of (search)