American History: Did the Articles of Confederation really work?

Essay by savvy24High School, 11th gradeA+, December 2006

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From 1781 to 1789, the Articles of Confederation provided the United States with an effective government.

The letter from the Rhode Island Assembly to Congress clearly shows us that the Articles of Confederation were effective but not perfect. The Articles did not have the strength to control all the states and make them pay their taxes. This really hurt the aspects of the Articles. It showed that they were weak. The fact is that the Articles may have been weak, but they were the only order of government around at that time. The Articles helped to begin the United States' journey to greatness.

The Estimated Market Value of U.S. Exports to Great Britain in comparison with the Estimated U.S. Population chart shows us that as the years progressed, so did the value of the trade between Britain and the U.S. Clearly shown is the fact that only a held-together government can truly have a trade line that productive.

There has to be order and understanding to keep trading goods with a country that formally controlled the other. The Articles has stipulations to all trade that allows this trade line to continue. The fact also is that the U.S. traded with other countries that are not depicted on the chart. This shows us that those profits more than likely soared as well. All together, America was pretty well off.

The letter from Delegate Joseph Jones of Virginia to George Washington showed the country that debt and cross thinking filled the country, but the Articles really had nothing to do with that. They stipulated trade and other areas of income, but they never forbid anything. The national debt was an everlasting thing that still lives on today. There is no getting rid of it. It will always be there.

John Jay's Instructions...