Bill of Rights Day (by Presidential Proclamation)
“Now, Therefore, I, Franklin D. Roosevelt, President of the United States of America, do hereby designate December 15, 1941, as Bill of Rights Day. And I call upon the officials of the Government, and upon the people of the United States, to observe the day by displaying the flag of the United States on public buildings and by meeting together for such prayers and such ceremonies as may seem to them appropriate.”
The first 10 amendments to the United States Constitution make up the Bill of Rights. Passed by Congress on September 25, 1789, these rights place limits on government power.
Did you know?
- The bill was introduced by James Madison. He later became the 4th President of the United States.
- Congress passed 12 of Madison’s proposed amendments. The states only ratified 10 of them. One of the two rejected by the states concerned the number of constituents for each Representative. The other limited when and how members of Congress are compensated. Neither was ratified at the time.
- The latter of the two rejected amendments was ratified 203 years later. The 27th Amendment restricted compensation for members of Congress.
- The Bill of Rights is displayed in The Rotunda of the National Archives Building in Washington, DC.
- There were 14 copies made; one for each of the 13 states to sign and one for the federal archives. Only 12 copies survive today.
HOW TO OBSERVE BILL OF RIGHTS DAY
Learn more about the Bill of Rights and exercise them. Read or watch a documentary about the first 10 Amendments to the U.S. Constitution.
- The First Congress by Fergus M. Bordewich
- James Madison by Ralph Ketcham
- The Story of the Bill of Rights
Use #BillOfRightsDay to post on social media.
Learn more right now by reading 6 Facts About the Bill of Rights.
BILL OF RIGHTS DAY HISTORY
President Franklin D. Roosevelt declared Bill of Rights Day on December 15, 1941, recognizing the history and importance of the first 10 amendments to the U.S. Constitution.